Happy Mother's Day, Banditas and Bandita Buddies!!! Thanks for coming over to hang out with me on Mother's Day.
Whether you're a mom, or just have a mom, or are mom to a four-legged creature, you have an amazing talent to get things done. I do include myself in this, as I'm sometimes astounded at how much I do get done. Not much of it has anything to do with my actual WORK, but I do astound myself at how many endless loads of laundry I do, including making sure uniforms are washed, pressed, belted, and ready for baseball, basketball, more baseball, and even, in the fall, football.
Which brings me to my focus for today. I'm a baseball mom. (I'm also a basketball mom, but that plays a distant trumpet to baseball). I have notes in my daily calendar which read "be sure baseball uniform is ready" and "practice jersey!" and "tournament uniforms!" These notes help keep me abreast of the demands of a heavy-duty baseball schedule for my eldest son who, if I do say so myself, is one damn fine baseball player. Just so you know, I am a master at getting grass stains out of baseball pants - although I do confess that I've had to throw one mud-saturated, grass-stained, sopping wet mess of a pair of baseball pants into the trash.
My youngest is just beginning this baseball journey. He's not the absolute maniac for the sport his older brother is, but he's getting into it. He has baseball practice too, on Saturdays, which is frequently right in the middle of when his older brother is playing, which means we have to split up, and it already means more uniform washing, that goes without saying.
I also now know the names of a tremendous number of players in various major league positions. I know virtually all the players on the Chicago Cubs. Being fond of the Atlanta Braves myself, I know a lot of them. The local team, the Bethesda Big Train, is fun to watch. And thanks to being a baseball mom, I now know about stances, swings, defensive plays and just exactly what a catcher is responsible for.
Between you and me, I'd so much rather be watching football.
Seriously. I adore it. My eldest likes it in a pale, "that's niiiiice" kind of way, and can play it and like it, but really, it's alllllllll about the baseball. My youngest however, to my glee, seems to be interested. Ahhhh.....maybe ONE of my boys will follow in my sports-footsteps! (Although since my DH played football, basketball, baseball and rugby, they have a lot of footsteps, if you know what I mean!)
Stephen Covey, the master of management, was counseling a man once who wanted to grow closer to his young son from whom he'd been estranged. Covey advised, "you must come to love whatever your son loves, and as you appreciate and love that thing, your son will come to see you clearly, understand that you're trying to connect, and reach out to love you too."
I mulled that over for a long time as my boys came along. It was important to me to understand my boys, to be there for them. I quoted the Covey line several times to myself as my eldest grew: I must love this thing that my son loves.
I used to think that watching baseball was like watching paint dry. My husband also loves the game, but you know, spouses frequently like different things, so I thought I was off the hook.
Hey, I love dog shows and showed several of my dogs to champion status and one to a Best in Show. (And no, that's not me, but it is my breed!) My DH could really care less, kinda the way I felt about baseball. But he tried to understand it, and even to supprt my dog-show-habit, and like it. I could do no less, so we'd go to games and finally, my husband explained the strategy of the game, which elevated it to a more interesting event, but still....
Then the boy came along and from 5 years old on, he would almost obsessively watch The Game. I never needed cartoons-as-babysitter, I could just turn on a baseball game. Nine innings of work would then await me, because the boy was engrossed and didn't require my attention.
When he got a bit older and began to play, I really HAD to pay attention. According to Covey, I had to learn about the game if I wanted to connect with him and understand him.
So, I became a baseball mom.
One day, I will probably be one of those moms, seated in some big-league stadium, grinning like a Cheshire Cat as my boy is introduced as the starting pitcher. Or the all-star outfielder. Or the catcher. I'll grin as they play the National Anthem - which he used to believe ALWAYS ended with PLAY BALL!!! - and I'll grin as they take the field. I can pretty much guarantee you, that win or lose, I'll still be grinning at the thought that my long lanky baseball boy has become a Big League Player.
And yes, I'll be the one yelling at the Umpire, cheering on his teammates, just like I do now, and whistling loud enough to be heard in the next county.
Whether he does or doesn't make it to "the Show", he's my boy. He and his brother are what make me a mom. They also make me a more well-rounded person (hey, I know from baseball!), and a better human being because they love me with their whole hearts.
If you are a mom of daughters, you may know a lot of this sports stuff too, thanks to Title Nine, but in addition you may have had to learn - *shudder* - about cheerleading, or Justin Bieber, or - *double shudder* - dance class.
Or if you're a pet-mom, you've had to learn about clean-up, hairballs, just how much fuzz is IN that chew toy, clipping nails, and the general maintenance that goes along with being a loving, responsible pet-mom.
The question of the day is this:
What have you learned to do, or learned to love, because of your child/children/or pets?
What have you put up with, especially if you're a pet mom, that you thought you would NEVER tolerate?
What about being a mom of any variety, has made you better?
If your mom, as mine is, has passed on, what would you say to her about all she did for you? (I'd say thanks for the laundry, as I now know JUST how much work that really is! Hahahah!)