Kinda like the Rockies’ bats lately, my words have ground to a crawl. When this happens, you churn on. There are no timeouts in soccer or life. Your life GPS won’t direct you around it. No, the only way is through.
So when the calendar ambles along for an intersection for your kid to move to college and it’s also the 19th anniversary of the day your dad died, well, there are stories.
Even if you don’t have time right away to write them. Or maybe you try and get seven graphs in and realize you’re so not doing the feelings justice. It’s like getting Frosted Flakes but pouring them into skim milk. WHO DOES THAT?
It’s an essential part of being a parent. Or a blogger. Especially a Colorado Rockies fan. There isn’t much in this world that doesn’t get a bit sweeter with belief. In fact, the lack of it is grotesque, like those Poptarts without frosting.
In the course of my discourse and my writing, I say stuff. Sometimes, it’s about Ingrid Michaelson or enchiladas. Other times, it’s about beliefs. Not just in Jesus or Buddha or the power of the changeup pitch, but sometimes.
I’m writing this somewhere over what looks like Arizonewmexitexas. I’d know for sure if I could see if those are Cardinals or Cowboys car flags attached to cars down there. But honestly, Cowboys fans are everywhere like a bad itch.
I’m grateful for what this weekend past became.
A crew of colleagues in new roles for nearly everyone pulled off the improbable. We delivered a seamless international training event, somehow, someway. I likened it to watching a possum cross eight lanes of highway traffic unscathed.
The girls just don’t ask as many questions. They have answers. Or, they don’t look to me for them as they once did. This is okay. Seasons change in fatherhood. If they change back, I’ll be ready for that, too.
The list that once pushed 400 is down to 213.
That’s still a lot of Go Ask Daddy. Want to know something? Every single question I’ve answered in this space has genuinely come from my children’s’ mouths. If they never ask another, I’ll have enough for 42 more Go Ask Daddy posts.
You’re doing it even when you’re not doing it. You’re doing it, especially when you’re not doing it because little eyes are watching you. And also, you’re practicing those characteristics you’ll call on later when you are parenting.
It’s not the big moments, but the incremental tangles and triumphs that lead to what you become as a parent – and what direction your child takes as a result.
This list could have been 55 things, but I kept it to five. Let’s talk about it. Feel free to add to these five, or bring up an observable aspect of your own. Parenting has changed my life and shaped what I’ve become as a coach and a writer and so much more.
It pains me to say that but also doesn’t. Camdyn didn’t give the most glowing review of Solo: A Star Wars Story. What we have feared for years seems to have come true: Disney might just be stinking up our story.
I didn’t ask for details.
We’ll see, though. When Disney first got ahold of Star Wars, I was apprehensive. I ended up crying in the theater! (My girls noted that all the other old dudes in there also cried.) I don’t want to cry sad tears again for the loss of the story I grew up with.
I’m not talking those horseshit half-graduations for third graders, either. Full-blown, leaving this school, taking my game to the next level graduations. Hayden’s done with high school and on to college at Piedmont International University.
Camdyn’s coming to Queen’s Grant High, where I can’t wait to get her on the field.
They’ve both overcome adversity and adverse conditions but found ways to shine in big ways. There’ve been tests of will and tests of character and just a butt load of tests – like, on subjects. We’re ready to get this summer on.
I’m not worried about jinxing it. I never have. Things aren’t perfect. Are they ever? But optimism … it’s tough to cover up. It’s like that first day of warm sun in the spring. That first deep breath of a kickass meditation.
Or how your car smells like pizza the day after you bring home takeout. #mmmm
It’s like having your good shoes on with a huge hike ahead. Deciding on a lineup change your rival hasn’t seen yet. I’m not sure it’s a 2019 thing. I don’t know when it started. I know it was good today. Shifts. Adjustments. Rules set for me.
I used to be a football player. And I used to have big hair. Not really at the same time, though. My football days, I was clean cut. Didn’t even have a mustache. It was the 80s, not the 70s. And I didn’t have long hair until high school.
Anyway, the coach and dad they see now has stories.
Not Superman stories, mind you. But stories. In middle school, they called me Speedy. Okay, it wasn’t the school team. It was intramurals. All the real players played real football. But all things being equal … I stood out in the field.
After a season of grit and a whoopin’ or two, we made the state playoffs. They assigned us in Round 1 to a remote outpost: East Wilkes. That’s in Ronda, N.C. That’s not a lady, that’s a town, although there was probably a handful of women named Ronda about.
We lost 8-4 in a crazy match that included eight goals from one player – and a view into the valley so breathtaking that I said, Damn, son, that’s a helluva view you guys have up here to the kid serving as ball-boy for the match.
I was grateful for one last game. I was grateful Remmi made it, hobbling in on crutches but in good spirits. I was grateful we fought back to within three, twice. I was grateful for the annoying siren they turn on when they score only rang out … well, eight times.