I write this for the 11 year old baseball player (and his or her parents) that's been doing their best, trying their hardest, showed up at every practice.... and still never gotten the game ball, still sat the bench, still struck out with two 'men' on and two 'outs' ....still holds fast to the game.... not to win, but for love.)
At least occasionally... When he's the only kid being transported he takes advantage of sitting up front. His two older brothers wrestle over the front seat on a regular basis. He never gets in that mix... always just takes his place in the passenger seat, directly behind me. However, when given the chance to sit 'shot gun', he grabs it.
It's a different view sitting up front.
Nothing blocks your view.
Things are clearer.
It's odd for me, not because he's sitting there, but because he talks to me a lot more. When he sits behind me, he's quiet as he looks out the side window, but seated beside me he chatters....
He seems to get a good view from the front seat...
not just on what's rushing by, or the traffic lights, or the bumper to bumper traffic.
But he gets a good view on life from the front seat (actually, he probably always had this view, he just hadn't stated it).
Yesterday, he climbed up front as we headed to his 6th baseball game in 4 days (the previous 5 had been played over the weekend in a tournament). Since I hadn't gotten to see the final game of that tournament he shared some of the notable hits, the hard ball drops, and the excitement. He also shared the pain... because they lost that tournament in the final inning.
I said something about it being so hard to loose when you give it your all; something about how they had made some good comebacks throughout the weekend and how important it is to never give up. And, of course, since I'm a mom, I said one of the most overused statements by any parent:
It isn't about winning the game, but doing your best.
He sat there for a bit, bending the brim of his hat between his hands, looking out the front window. Quiet for a long time....
Finally he said,
"You know, there's no difference between hitting a home run and there being a guy on third that someone hits in. Everyone thinks there is, but there isn't."
I don't think he had any idea how much that sentence hit me.
I thought about it the whole time I watched his game that night.
All you need is a hit.
All you need is to step up to bat.
All you need is the front seat view...
That it doesn't have to be grand or memorable...it just has to do the job.
You just need an RBI. Run batted in.
Sometimes you may need a bunch of RBI's if you're down by a bunch... but you don't need a powerhouse hitter, fantastic plays, or even a home run...
It's a whole different view...
NO difference between a single and a home run.
And not just on baseball...
In some ways his view is actually the backseat view...
It's the view of life not being about the glory, but about the simple.
It's the view of life not being about the individual, but about the team.
Hit the guy in...
And if you're on third, run and slide and get dirty.
And if you strike out swinging...
You've got another bat coming up.
And another one after that.