Every Time I Try to Get Out, They Pull Me Back In

This one I should have seen coming.

On Friday, the last day of the t-ball season, the Butterfly Blues–my team of seven 5- and 6-year-old girls–finally got it together. Just as I was wondering whether my nonstop stream of exhortations (“Keep your hands back! Don’t take your eye off the ball! Drop the bat before you run! Stop eating dirt!”) had had any effect, the Blues gave me a final-game treat.

Several of them, one of them easily the smallest girl in the league, successfully hit pitched balls. The reluctant player who had to be physically dragged onto the field by her father for every practice and every game threw with accuracy and force and couldn’t stop smiling. And Firecracker made a nifty pitcher’s-mound snag of a hard grounder back through the middle.

As tired as I was–Friday nights almost always find me dragging ass–and as ready for the hassle of coaching to end, I was literally jumping for joy on that field. My team was having fun, and they had visibly improved. My own daughter made perhaps the defensive play of the year. I was one proud dad and one proud coach.

Proud enough, I’d say, to bring me back next year if Firecracker wants to play again.

Yep. Shoulda seen it coming. | DL

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