Community

It’s eight o’clock on a Sunday morning.  It’s the first truly warm, sunny day after almost an entire month of gray, cold, rain.  I’m sitting on metal bleachers, eating a bagel and drinking too-sweet iced tea.  I imagine myself as a solar battery, absorbing the sun and feeling my energy restored. 

Somewhere in the dugout to my left, my 12 year old is waiting for his turn to play.  I cannot see him from where I am.  His teammates are on the field, looking worn out after a weekend of tournament play.  They aren’t chatty and look a bit rumpled this morning.  It’s a different story on the bleachers!  I am surrounded by smiles, friendly greetings, mutual appreciation for the turn in the weather.  There are moms and dads, siblings and grandparents surrounding me.  A dad in the front row yells to the left fielder to move in a couple of steps.  Another dad is assessing the position of the scoreboard and whether or not the fence should have been extended beyond the bleachers where we are sitting.  Moms sip coffee and spray their kids with sunscreen and bug spray.  As the game gets started, the kids on the field begin to perk up.  They banter.  They chatter.  They sing “G-O-O-D- E-Y-E: good eye, good eye, good eye” as a teammate waits for that perfect pitch.  The teams are well matched today and despite an out-of-the-park home-run by their star player, the kids have to work hard to earn their 5-3 victory.

I stand to walk to the concession booth for some water.  I can’t walk more than a few feet without stopping to chat.  Hi Chip, Hi Sara, Hi Dana…The conversation doesn’t matter.  I know these people only in the context of these moments; parents sitting together, cheering “our” team, waiting through yet another inning.  We talk of plans to find last-minute lodging in the middle of July near Sebago Lake for the State tournament.  We talk of double elimination and double plays.  We talk of ways to get the damp, locker room smell out of cleats.  We talk of the weeks of sacrifices–plans rearranged in order to have our children here on the first sunny day of summer.  We understand the meaning of this time in our kids’ lives; how All-Star baseball shapes this present into future nostalgia. 

I smile all the way to the concession stand.  It is one of those moments of recognition of the perfection of life.  My child, loving the game.  Me, loving my child–bringing us into this community, in this moment.  It is joy.

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6 Comments on “Community”

  1. Christina Stuver Paquette Says:

    Sue,
    Wow! Your words in this one are my life. You are an amazing at this! I will check back often!!

  2. Sam Goodall Says:

    you have a great ability to convey both images and feelings with vividness and clarity. I’m really enjoying reading your words, and find myself looking forward to the next one! xox

  3. Griffin Simmons Says:

    Very nice, Mom, I liked how it started out as simple story and then evolved into something that is so important in everyones lives…appreciating simple things. I love you so much. Love Griffin


  4. Way to live in the now and appreciate the simple things. I love how the story started small (one person) expanded and came back again to you. Really well done I am enjoying reading these keep it up!

  5. Lesley Cruz Says:

    Ahhhh! This is summer at its best. Don’t ever stop writing, Susie!! We are so blessed to be invited into your brilliant mind and beautiful heart.

  6. Jennifer Penney Says:

    I love you Susie. Please keep writing!!!


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