This is where the super-planner in me resurfaces trying desperately to put together a picture of what the rest of the season and off-season might look like. Silly, I know. Not to worry though, I'm perfecting the art of quieting that part of me in order to keep my soul at peace and mind at ease because in all reality, well, in our particular reality (the baseball life), these questions and details will be answered and unfolded day by day. The real challenge, I'm discovering, is finding safe outlets to discuss frustrations and worries not only with people that will withhold judgment but, more importantly, will be able to truly relate and empathize. For most individuals this would be family and close friends - the people you've grown up with, experienced much of life with, grown with, built trust and love with - your core, your foundation. And as much as I lean on my family and friends for support and love, its always going to be difficult for them to truly understand and relate to this baseball lifestyle. The conversation rarely will end with them looking you in the eyes saying, "I know exactly what you mean." This season, especially, I'm finding that even my own immediate family doesn't quite "get" the difficulties, fears, uncertainties and sacrifices that the baseball lifestyle entails. And they cannot be blamed for this, of course. It's not a matter of me being angry because they don't understand - it simply IS WHAT IT IS and its my acceptance of that fact that is difficult. I am learning that the family and friends that I normally look to most for guidance, acceptance, and understanding might not always be able to offer it best when it boils down to the baseball life. That can be a hard pill to swallow - for anyone, no doubt.
WHERE I DRAW STRENGHTH:
Now, living with Matt full-time this season, I can say it is really nice to be able to have other baseball wives around to socialize with and relate to. It is especially nice (but rather rare) to find one or two girls who can become wonderful, genuine friends whom you can lean on and truly trust and love. Its not too often this happens, however, because a baseball wife friendship is, in general, only a half-a-year relationship (physically seeing one another, anyway). A baseball wife friendship is what I like to refer to as an accelerated friendship. Getting to know one another happens faster, a friendship forms quicker, and you become closer sooner because ultimately, both parties know that the time together is limited and certainly never guaranteed, so there's never a moment to waste.
I feel extremely grateful to be within an organization where I have made a good number of close girlfriends because I know that that is not always the case throughout the different ball clubs. I am always making a conscious effort to get our little group of wives together (especially when the boys are on the road) for lunches, dinners, pool parties - any kind of get-together to help the time pass quicker and to continue to build loving and lasting friendships amongst one another. I cannot stress enough how important is has been to have these girls to lean on and to confide in - woman to woman, baseball wife to baseball wife.
I wanted to keep this post fairly short but definitely wanted to express the gratitude I have towards the baseball wives whom I have in my life right now. These are girls who have made my baseball experience so much more fulfilling. From them, I am able to feel a tad bit more "normal" in a lifestyle that is not so "normal" at all. From them, I am able to cut loose, relax, let go, have a good time and not worry about what might be coming next. I have grown so much not only as a baseball wife, but as a person. From them, I feel supported, understood, loved, accepted... this is PRECIOUS and PRICELESS to me and I am so grateful to each and every one of them for the certain characteristics they bring to the baseball wifestyle table.
Thank you girls, without you, I might be a crazy mad-woman ready to hang up the cleats.