First hit of the season
Sam got his first hit of the season at his baseball game last night. Even though he was thrown out at first base (so it technically wasn’t a hit) I still clapped and cheered as though he’d just hit the game-winning grand slam.
Until last night, Sam used his math skills instead of his athletic skills to get on base. He knew his odds of a walk were far greater than his odds of getting on base from a hit, so he would get up to the plate and watch the pitches go by.
Strike after strike after strike.
He’d stand by and anxiously wait for the umpire’s call. The repeated strike-outs were affecting his confidence. And his no-swing strategy was affecting my patience. I played softball for 13 years and I remember from my game days that striking out by watching the ball was THE WORST way to get out.
But like his teammates, I’d tell him to “Shake it off,” or “It’s okay, Bud. You’ll get it next time.”
I am THAT ANNOYING MOM who we all remember from our little league days; the one we’d roll our eyes at yet somehow loved despite her constant cheering and reassurances after bad plays. I’m the mom who knows all of the player’s names and cheers for each one for the entire two hour game. I call out defensive plays or tell the infield to “look alive” when I think a hard grounder is coming. I yell, “Hit your cutoff!” to the outfielders when chasing down balls to the back fence. I call out, “COVER!” to the pitcher when a runner is stealing home and the catcher is looking for the wild pitch by the backstop.
I’m a very lively Mom-spectator; I just can’t help myself.
I recently overheard another mom say that when her son is up to bat, she doesn’t say anything because it makes him nervous. I thought about that for a while. And I concluded that ME not saying anything would make Sam nervous. I’m a sayer. I’m a reassurer. I’m a cheerleader and Sam knows this. To stay quiet is not in my nature, so I dispense with the encouragement all game long.
When Sam ran down the first base line after his hit, I jumped and cheered and even teared up a bit, and when he was called out, he just smiled like a goof. He kept that beautiful smile for the rest of the game and I continued to clap so hard I thought my diamond would pop right out of my engagement ring.
The team lost last night but for me it was our best game yet.