It is just a ball a little over 3 inches in diameter that weighs a little over 5 ounces. The boys of summer swoop low to grab it, hurl it with all their might at velocities that can near 100 miles per hour, and swing for the fences while keeping their eye on this little ball with hopes of blasting it out of the park. Yep, this little ball is a symbol of a lot of things for a lot of people.
For me? As a mom who has sit on the stands, in the bleachers, on the grass, in the car for countless practices and games for over 20 years, (the time when my oldest started playing t-ball) , this little ball has been a symbol for me of a lot of blood, sweat, and tears….and the growth, passion, and inspiration that resulted from all of the blood, sweat, and tears. It’s a symbol of teamwork, and dedication. It’s a symbol of patience for there’s a heck of a lot of waiting in this game! It’s a symbol of courage, for it takes a lot of courage to step up to the plate time after time, with your eye on the ball but every one else’s eye on you and whether or not you can hit that little 3 inch ball. There are large doses of cheers and jeers that players endure. There are lots of victories and lots of defeats, all in a single game, let alone a season or a baseball ‘career’. Kind of like life, I’d say!
Yes, am so thankful for this little white (usually dust-covered) ball with red-stitching that inspires and brings out so much passion in so many on all sides of the field. I’m thankful for the years and years of watching it being thrown, bunted, hurled, dropped, missed, and hit out of the park. I’m thankful for the muscles and character and tenacity that this little ball helped bring out in my kids, and how this little ball brought so many sweet families together. I’m thankful for the lessons learned on all sides of the field and for the way it made so many memories for my friends and family. This little ball will always be a symbol to me of so many things that are good and fun and true in a boy’s life and in the lives of those who cheer him on…on and off the field.