Against my will, Travis signed us up for a co-ed softball team.
The team, “Sit on My Base,” was started by Travis’ coworker and all of the members on the team are around our age, mid-late twenties. I roped my friend Jessica into joining the team as well. She’s a natural softball player and I needed some serious moral support.
I haven’t really thought about softball since, oh, second grade, when I played (aka, I picked dandelions in the field). I remember that my coaches made up a position for me: 1 1/2 base because they didn’t know where else to put me. That’s how good I was (Note my sarcasm!).
Actually my memories of softball are of dreading going to games, getting hit in the face by a ball (and breaking my glasses), and of striking out…every. single. time.
So, you can imagine my thrill when Travis asked if I wanted to be on the team.
Travis said something like, “C’mon. It will be so fun. Softball’s great! We can meet some new people! Ahh, I love softball…” Blah. Blah. Blah.
After agreeing to join the team….as an emergency substitute, I figured I might have to play one, maybe two, games all season.
Last night was our first game.
I planned on staking out my spot on the stands to watch as our team played.
Then, the unthinkable happened…
Travis emailed me at work, asking: “So…how do you feel about playing tonight?”
My poor students in last hour had to deal with my sour mood after I realized that I wasn’t going to get out of this.
I got home from work, scrambling to get dinner ready and change to make it to our game. Travis said we were going to meet the team at a restaurant to grab some drinks before the game.
Since I had been joking that I would need to “pre-game” each of our softball games to make it through, I wholeheartedly agreed!
Upon getting to the field to warm up a few minutes before the game, I realized that I haven’t thrown a softball or swung a bat…since second grade softball, memories I usually try to tune out :). Further, I had found my old softball mitt at home over Easter and somehow it still fit. So, with my teeny tiny mitt, I was ready to go.
I warmed up with Jessica, gaining some confidence as I threw decently and hit about half of the balls, which is better than my previous average.
Then, game time…
Travis had lovingly requested that I be put in right field (aka, the dead zone). I could have been picking dandelions in the field and been more useful :). Not a ball came my way all night, but I found myself feeling ready and excited at the thought of getting into the game.
What was happening?
Then, the inning was over and we headed in to bat. I tried to squelch flashbacks of striking out and walked confidently up to bat.
The pitcher wound up, threw the ball, and….
I hit it!
I figured this was just a fluke, but I ran my heart out to first base, silently telling myself “I don’t know what happened, but… good job!”
As the innings went on, I batted two more times. Each time I hit the ball and made it on base, even scoring one run!
The only answer that I can think of to explain this anomaly is that karma is finally giving me a good hand after those miserable childhood softball years.
We didn’t win the game, but I left that night excited for our next softball game and hoping that enough people would be gone that I would get to play.
Sunday night is our next game, and dare I say it, I’m eager!
Put me in, coach! I’m finally ready to play!