So it was hot Saturday in Charlotte (About 90 degrees and a little humid) and as usual Will had like 16 layers of clothes for no reason except that he likes the gear. He came inside from playing out side, his face beet red, sweat dripping down, and drinking water like he was about to die.
I said "Will, buddy why don't you take some of your clothes off. It is so hot outside."
Will said, " I just don't want to dad. I like them."
I then decided I would try and come up with a clever analogy that he could understand. "Will, remember when the sun came out after it rained and we found all those worms on our driveway.
Will: -- "Yeah dad, I remember."
Austin: -- "And Remember how they were all fried up and dead because they got so hot in the sun. You are going to be like those worms if you don't take off some of your clothes, " I said pretty proud of my analogy.
Will: "Dad, Worms don't wear clothes!" he said dismissing my comparison and walking away like I was pretty stupid.
What could I say but, Touchee. And off he went back to the hot summer heat, 16 layers and all.
In the midst of shoving dinner in Paris' face, trying to find Cooper's baseball uniform, and pick up all the messes that Will collects behind him, I said, "I can't take care of all four people all the time!"
Will, "Mommy, there are only three people for you to take care of."
Me, "There are four, because I have to take care of myself too."
Will, "Mommy, I'll take care of you," followed by a big hug and kiss.
It's the sweet little moments like these that keep us going!
There we were sitting and watching the MARA Little League Cubs take on the Yankees. It had been a somewhat disappointing season thus far. Coop's team (The Cubs) had been doing fine (5-3 record) but he had not really shown the improvement this season I was hoping for. I mean he was solid, but I was hoping this would be his break out season. And yet, just last game he struck out and hit a couple of ho-hum ground balls. Had I created a monster encouraging him to play fall baseball? He had seemed to regress since Spring ball. All these doubts of an ultra-competitive-trying-to-live-vicariously-through-my-son-dad started to enter my head.
Since turning about 30, I had pretty effectively channeled my love for the game into watching my kids. I still play softball, etc. but have definitely prioritized my kids. So as Cooper seemed to plateau, this was very hard for me to take. It was not for lack of effort, Cooper and I had hit the cages countless nights (We bought the 150 round package), often play catch late at night in front of the house only lit by street lamps, and have practiced drills in the hot and humid summer.
But then something happened, he seemed to have a little extra zip in his throws tonight. He snared a would be double down the line and made the play at first. He did the splits to make the stretch at first and get a player out on a bang-bang play. Now it was time for Cooper to bat, my anxiety and nervousness settling in the pit of my stomach -- AND THEN THE GONG WENT OFF. First pitch -- Cooper drills the ball over the right fielder's head. He runs to first, I am out of my seat running along the dug out, screaming at him to run since he is not fastest kid in the world. He rounds second and takes a look at the ball rolled up against the fence and then third and the base coach is waving him home. The ball is thrown to the plate but not in time -- Cooper's first home run of the season and the first for the Cubs all year. I was so happy for him. Then came the best part -- Cooper running out of the dugout and searching for his dad (me) and running and jumping into my arms. I realize I am totally bragging about my kid on this blog, but for those who have kids and for those who might one day, that moment, of having practiced so many hours together with your son, after some rough games, was absolutely priceless.
As luck would have it, his next time up he hit a homer on the first pitch again. Cooper had not hit one the entire season, but today was his day. And a day I will never forget as a Dad. Let's hope he is not a one-game wonder. But either way, that moment was worth all the insane fees for MARA baseball right there.
Looking for a unique and thoughtful Christmas gift? One of my friends has started a new etsy site where you can purchase unique and beautiful family trees and genealogy charts that are made to frame. I bought one of the geanealogy wheels a few years ago for Austin's parents and they loved it and my mom has requested one for this year. And it makes you get a bit of family history done(but not too much, don't be scared off and the information may just be hanging around already) so you can feel good about that. The site is:
*****Alert - this post contains adult anatomy language ******
Cooper and I were sitting on the couch a few days ago and he was trying to crack my knuckles - he has an obsession with the cracking of every joint in his body lately. I hate it when people crack my knuckles and so it was a little joke for him.
All of the sudden he said,"Mom, I ripped your testicle off!"
Uh, what??, "What did you say," I said?
"You know, the little skin that is on the side of your fingernail by the hangnail, your testicle," Cooper said.
I died laughing! "Oh you mean your cuticle," I said.
This was the most hilarious thing that happened on conference Sunday this year. Unfortunately the boys also thought it was quite hilarious and repeated the word "testicle" for a long time.
You know you have reached an all-time low when your dinner is one half of a grilled cheese sandwich that you just picked up off the floor where your baby threw it overboard and you don't even think about the fact that you are eating ABC food off of the floor.
On another note, I have been trying to savor the precious moments that happen with the children. This morning I got the boys up and ready for school then they ran to the bus with me waving at them from the porch. Will was almost on the bus when he turned around with a big smile and said, "Have a great day mom!" It warmed my heart to see his innocent little face with a sincere wish for me to have a great day. I know that most of the time I am complaining about the kids but I am truly grateful for them and the light they bring into my life.