“Mom, why do you always leave so fast after my games?”
My 12 year old asked me this question the other night and my answers were obvious. He had a ride home with his dad. I would see them at home. I could rush home to start dinner and put the dogs outside. And, most importantly, after a baseball game these days, my to do list is four miles long.
But his question kept ringing in my ears for days - like someone tapping me on the shoulder over and over again or whispering into my ear.
So, tonight I stayed.
I stood there in the pouring rain as the coaches rushed to clean up the baseball field and other kids rushed into their parents’ waiting cars.
I stood there on a Friday night, after a long day of work and sitting through a high school baseball game earlier in the day.
I stood there in the cold.
I stood there and watched.
I watched him and his dad pack up their things from the dugout and make their way slowly behind home plate and around first base towards me.
I watched him as other parents and players called out to him about a ball that was called a strike.
I watched him as he shook off the loss and the strike outs and just shared these moments with his dad.
I watched him as his hunched over post-loss slump gradually straightened into a relaxed stride and his frustrated face turned into one filled with a smile.
I watched him as walked up to me and said “you didn’t have to stay!” But his dimpled smile and twinkling eyes told me otherwise.
Tonight I stayed.
And I’m so glad I did.