this photo was taken using an underwater camera. we had leftover shots on it from the snorkel/whalewatching trip in hawaii.
i have a love/hate relationship with baseball.
i love to watch nathaniel play first base. when i see his 6' 3" frame stretched out to catch a throw out, i am busting at the seams.
i hate to watch him pitch (even though he's very good at it) because there's too much pressure on him when he plays that position.
this season has been challenging. the team doesn't boast but one senior and four juniors. some of the boys on the team have never before played baseball...never thrown a ball or worn a baseball glove or fielded a grounder or judged a pop fly to the outfield, not to mention held a bat and stood in the batter's box facing down a pitcher who is throwing 80 mile per hour fast balls inches from their body.
there have been some shining moments...like when the rookie right fielder caught a stinging hit like a football, cradling it in the bread basket and then breaking into a beaming smile. but, more often than not, the team has suffered some crushing defeats. i think pro coaches would label this a "transition year."
next week is the end of the regular season, followed by a trip to the district tournament. historically, the team has never made it out of the first round of this tournament and we don't hold out much hope for this year either. but even with all of the trials this season has presented these boys with, they continue to show up ready to play a game they love.
next year will be nathaniel's last baseball season of high school. this is a year that will be marked by many "this is the last"s. and i'm really feeling nostalgic and soft and tender. so whether i feel nervous when he pitches or proud when he makes a great play at first or hits a line drive over the second baseman's head (or doesn't do any of these things) i want to be there to see it. everything could possibly be the last...even when it isn't.