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The baseball player

Apr 24, 2012 - 9 comments

My son means everything to me.  Well, both of my boys do.  Precious and dear do not capture an ounce of the feelings I have for them.  It's the kind of love that makes my heart feel like it is bursting one minute and busting the next.  When my boys were little, I felt great love and pride for them with not as much of the heartache that other moms of older kids spoke of.  I get it now.  

I got a good dose of heartache as my son's developmental delay was becoming more challenging and a diagnosis was made.   I think about how anxious I was while we were going through the evaluation process.  I was scared, angry and at times, heart broken.  

I was still under the illution then that life had to be perfect.  I had to be the super uber mom and my kids must be fabulous and wonderful at all times.  While one could take one look at us during the early years . . .  my messy hair and tired eyes and my kids in mismatched outfits with a few food stains on them . . . and know instantly that we were a long way from perfection.  But we all had smiles on our faces.  We were innocently blissful not knowing that life would get harder.  

I never knew that I cared about my kids being good at things.  When my son struggled and I heard about what my friend's kids were doing . . .  I felt a bit of a sting.  When I see a friend of my son's doing something right away that my son has worked on for a long time, it's another shot to the heart.  I never realized that I was competative.  Oh, this is a horrible revelation for me-----  I don't want to be competative!!  I hate that.  I don't want to compare my child to someone else's and hope that my child does better!  But years of seeing my son lag behind and watching him TRY so hard makes my mind scream "COME ON!  IT'S HIS TURN!!"  

Tonight was the first game of my dear son's baseball season.  My husband is out of town so it was just me at the game.  He's moved up a level and is one of the younger players on his team.  His first inning in the outfield, I was on pins and needles . . . he was having some pretend fight in which he was top Jedi, twirling around with his pretend light saber or he was picking up dirt and throwing it in the air or looking at something off in space in the other direction of the batter.  Painful to be the mother when this is going on.  You can only yell "get ready" and be ignored maybe two times without drawing even more attention to him.  So I sit silently screaming inside.  I don't want him to be humiliated when he is having his fake battle with various clone troopers when a ball goes right past him or worse he gets hit in the head because he's not watching.  Then he was up at bat.  This is a higher level, three strikes and you are out.  It is half kid pitch and half coach pitch.  Kid was pitching on him . . .  He swung at something he shouldn't have by jumping out a bit to get it and the coach on the other team laughed at him.  This is a pompous man that we know from another sport.  This man believes his son will be a professional athlete someday and is very condensending to others that are just trying to give their child a good experience.  When he laughed . . .  well------------  he's pretty lucky I didn't take that bat from my boy and whack him upside the head with it.  Again, painful.

Then when he was in the outfield for the next inning . . . he got to play first base.  AND----  my boy caught two balls and got two of the three outs for his team!  

And here is the big stuff . . .. Huge.  My boy pitched when it was time for kid pitch!  This is absolutely huge as he pitched on opening day.  Only one other boy pitched during the game.  Why?  Because not everyone can do it.  There is a bit of skill involved, I guess, in being able to pitch well.  He struck someone out!!  Okay, he walked a few too.  But he pitched!  The pressure!!  And when he is going through the whole pitcher stance and getting ready to throw, the other team is shouting and taunting.  He kept his head together and did the best he could.  And ----  and I must admit this feels good----  when it comes to pitching, he does better than almost everyone but one or two other kids on his team.  

Mind you, my son keeps his hands in a curled position much of the time.  You have to understand that my son doesn't like to open his hands or use them much.  

My son then got a nice hit and made it to second base when someone else got the third out and the game was over.  But, he got a hit.  And hits were scarce during this game.  

My boy did just fine.  Even though he is the master Jedi in the outfield and just called me to his bedroom because his eyes hurt (from too much dirt thrown in them by HIMSELF at the game).  He did just fine.  And Mr. Pompous Man can kiss my behind.  When he cheers his boy on for being fabulous----  I'm cheering because my son is on a team doing something he enjoys.  And when he does just fine and chosen to pitch . . .  it felt like it was HIS TURN!  

PS:  His baby brother got a goal tonight at soccer which was before the baseball game.  It was a GOOD night.

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by skepticalpeach, Apr 24, 2012
I think that as parents in a way we got lucky. Even though it takes a lot of coaching, therapy, time, effort and money both of our kiddos learn how to do what we set out to teach them eventually. Many children with developmental problems never read or write or play baseball. I think of it this way, it's ok if she needs extra help and it takes her longer to learn as long as she gets it eventually. I'm so proud of her for every little accomplishment. Now she can sit still for 20 minutes! I love it.

I also didn't ever realize that my mind would ever get so defensive over someone. Whenever anyone attacks/mocks my daughter I'd love to go after them. I'm usually a calm person too!

I'm really glad your son found something he's good at and enjoys. That must make him feel so good about himself! I wonder what the other coach will think if his child doesn't become a pro athlete?

skepticalpeach (formerly diva2317)

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by specialmom, Apr 25, 2012
Well, most kids don't become pro athletes but instead----  great sports fans.  I get that everyone wants to win but have noticed that certain parents take it VERY seriously.  And sadly, for boys----  being good at sports is a badge of honor or something.  My kid just so happens to love sports and it is good for him in many ways----  so we go with it.  But you run across so many simple minded folks along the way that lose sight of the big picture.  Kind of makes me pity their kids because what if they don't continue to perform for Daddy?  A super star at 7 often isn't one at 17.  

Except my kid, of course, the STAR pitcher!  LOL

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by specialmom, Apr 25, 2012
Most of how I felt last night and why I wrote this though was just about my son really coming a long way. He's still the kid that is fighting his light saber battle with an unknown enemy and playing in dirt while spinning in circles----  but he's also the kid that can wiz the ball into the catcher's mit as he strikes a guy out.  Love it.  

Avatar universal
by teddybears4ever2, Apr 25, 2012
I have to admit I love reading about your son.  His stories make me happy.  Watching any child do what they like, special needs even more so always make me smile.  I'm so glad that your son has found that he can be good at baseball.  
My sister is right everything that your special angels accomplish is wonderful.  The fact that your son can pitch is wonderful, and he should be proud of himself for that.

Avatar universal
by Vance2335, Apr 25, 2012
When I played baseball there were a few coaches like that guyyou spoke about. This is what terrifies me when my son starts to play sports because I know that I will react in a very different way then most. Not during the game because it takes the fun out of the game but after the game the guy would get an earful and maybe more if he wants to press his luck. I know it's bad to say but I know so many kids who just wanted to have fun (when I was a kid) but because of a coach never did. I am determined to make sure that doesn't happen.

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by specialmom, Apr 25, 2012
I think he IS really proud.  Rarely--------  ever?? -----------  are there things that he can do that others can't.  Well, besides spinning like a mad man and never ever getting dizzy.  I was just about dying when he got to the pitchers mound as i am already on pins and needles hoping that he holds himself together out there, doesn't do anything that everyone yells at him for or says the kid kiss of death "you s uck" . . . and then he takes probably the most pressure felt spot at the pitchers mound.  He looked so little and when he first went out there, he was excited and jumped up and down flapping his arms.  It was dusk and I just pushed my sun glasses back down over my eyes so my expression would not be seen by anyone.  The other team just was yelling and carrying on and then he threw a pitch that went way out.  Then he threw a good one.  And he had more bad ones than good ones but plenty of good ones.  He's not going to the major leagues or anything . . . but to see him shine a bit and do something others who doubt him can't . . .  ah, it just felt good.  I'm still basking in this sunshine . . . even though it might have been the longest inning in history (literally).  

Thanks for your nice comments ladies!

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by specialmom, Apr 25, 2012
Vance, I like the way you think!  We've encountered more and more of these competitive parents . . . and my oldest is only in the second grade!  My son played pee wee football --HIS idea and as he has sensory and craves impact . . . we said what the heck.  We'll try it.   Of course, then we realized his motor planning and processing issues would mean a slow start and this was full contact football with pads which took a LOT of getting used to for him.  There were parents on that team that were complaining about the lack of 'talent' on the team besides their kid.  This same jerk coach on the other team's son played football with my boy.  One day on the bus, this boy slid up to my son's seat and said to him "ya know what?  You shouldn't even call yourself a football player.  Your not good enough to call yourself a football player. In fact, you aren't really a football player at all."   Can you believe that?  My son said he didn't say a word back to him and just looked out the window.  I asked him if he stayed silent the whole way to school and he said no, he asked him about indiana jones and then they started talking about that.  That's my kid.  Find something to get along with everyone about.  But what that boy said to my son most likely came from his rotten dad.  AND, my son improved as that season went so poop on them!  

so, Vance, I like the way you think.  Sports is about building who a child is rather than tearing them down and there should be room for everyone to enjoy the game.  Your kids will be lucky to have you in their corner.

Avatar universal
by Vance2335, May 01, 2012
Well that kid is in for a huge disappointment. I have if ever seen a kid who was touted up by the parent be as good as they have been told. So as they get older that ego that was built from the parent continues and then the kid either stops playing or thinks he is the best in his small town and in 20 years talks about how he could have been a pro, but in reality he couldn't carry a jock for a pro. And because of his parents this kid is going to be an *** because he has been told he is better then everyone else.

"Your kids will be lucky to have you in their corner."
Lucky until I get arrested for slapping a coach who has an But thank you.

If my kids want to go into sports fine (i already think my son will because he has taken interest in sports at age 2) and if they want help fine I will give them all the help they want. But never make them think that they are better then everyone else.

Avatar universal
by Momofu, Aug 05, 2014
As i read how anxious you were and comparing your kids to others, it feels like you are talking about me... And now that you said your child is doing fine encourages me that mine will be alright too.... And he will catch up ... Thanks for being an inspiration.

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