Mar 20, 2010

When did this happen?

Opening day was today for our neighborhood little league. Hunter is in t-ball this year. They received their uniforms today and when he put it on I almost croaked. When did he get to be so big? Where is my baby? Visions of the movie, "Sandlot", flashed through my head and all of those coming of age moments that sports represent. Sports and boyhood seem to go hand in hand in our American culture.
Here he is sitting tall in the front middle with his team. I am not really sure how much of a natural athelete Hunter is, to be honest, but for now, he is happy to be on a team and playing ball. I wish all sports could stay this way....innocent and playing just for the fun and love of the game.I have mixed feelings about sports. Not being very good at them in a family where the other three siblings WERE good athletes, I've seen the ups and downs that sports brings. I've seen what happens when you don't get to play, when you make the winning catch, when you're the last out, the value of being part of a team. I've seen how insane the competition gets when the boys get older and how viscious sports can be. I've seen beautiful, life-defining moments of triumph and sacrifice happen on the field as well. But for now, he'll play as long as he's still having fun, and like anything else, we'll take one year at a time.

And then we came home and the first thing he did was strip off the uniform and go play remote control cars with the neighbor kid. We were back to reality. The day was gorgeous, my tulips and daffodils in front are in bloom, and we all spent the rest of day in the yard. I sat in my rocking chair and enjoyed watching the kids and flowers, Tone worked on a set of bunkbeds he is building for the girl's room and every now and then he would show me his progress, and the kids ran back and forth down the sidewalk. Hunter's just a boy, enjoying being just a boy, and for now, that's all I ask.

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