Yesterday I commemorated the 7th anniversary of this little ol’ blog by celebrating life in the best possible ways with some of my favorite people.

To be perfectly honest, I’d forgotten the significance of the day until one of my son’s best friends wished me a happy blog anniversary as I jogged past him at shortstop on my way to left center field. Sweet boy.

A group of kids from our Classical Conversations program got together to play softball at a local park. Because of a tournament, the ball fields were off limits, but we played on the turf football field.

Softball was a big part of my life from age 11 to 21. Back in the day (I have a love/hate relationship with that phrase) my family lived at the ball park: my sister and I played; my dad, one grandfather, and my cousin coached; my dad and the other grandfather’s business sponsored my team; my mom kept score.

Glory days.

My junior year in high school our team won league, district, state, and went to nationals. I’ve always told my boys that their Poppy (my daddy) was a better coach than any they’ve had and our team was better than any they’ve played for.

Cocky, but I stand behind it.

Daddy and Pappy

When I first heard about the softball game Friday morning, I was so in. And then I started that internal conversation again: does everyone think I’m old and I’m the last to know? The last year I played on a team, our oldest son was a baby. For years, dreams of chasing fly balls and running bases returned each spring as sure as the bloom of the cherry blossoms.

One year I told my husband I either needed to have another baby or get on a ball team. The baby won.

As an adult, I know the thrill of watching a team that dominates, that impresses with the tightness of their defense and the power of their bats. I once played on that team; the statistics tell the story of how we shocked and awed.

Moments remain forever etched in memory: the catch in center on the big field at Andrews when it all finally clicked; smooth double plays with me at short and Carol at second; dropping a fly ball in foul territory—on purpose—because I knew the runner at third would tag up and we’d lose the game.

What I wouldn’t give for a few of the video memories that kids today have.

The final player count Friday morning was nine 16-19 year old boys, one dad, my 11-year-old son, and me. Today every muscle in my back, legs, and arms ache, but I wouldn’t trade those hours on the field for anything.

I’ve morphed from a power player to someone who throws like the proverbial girl. It’s even worse than the year I had Mackey Sasser syndrome when throwing from pitcher to first base back when Mackey Sasser was a teenager and hadn’t had the problem yet himself. I hurt my back the last year I played and threw leaning backwards instead of forwards trying to protect it, and I haven’t played enough since then to work out that kink.

Hitting was easier than I expected, although I would have loved to see the sweet side spin of a slow arched softball gliding towards the plate instead of the straight toss people think an underhand pitch requires. For me, the game died when fast pitch became the rule.

Those boys gave me a gift letting me be one of them for a day.

It's my 7th blog anniversary! No blogging today, but a softball game & a wedding!I showered away the sweat and the shorts and substituted a dress and an updo for the wedding of a boy (Daniel’s 28 now, but still a boy to me) we’ve known since he was two, and my daughter and I spread self tanner to hide the farmer’s tan I earned on the field. When I noticed my dangly earrings didn’t fall at the same point my husband casually mentioned my right earlobe sits lower than my left. Really?

The man knows me better than I know myself.

We spent the time at this intimate outdoor wedding and reception with such dear friends. When the grooms’s mom and I were younger and still wrangling toddlers, we’d talk on the phone for at least an hour at a time whenever we had the chance.

I told my son not to expect me to be so fabulous at his wedding. Surely Stephanie walked straight off a red carpet best-dressed list; she makes 50-something look good.

I watched her and Daniel glide through the mother/son dance. She looked up into the eyes of her tall, gangly son, a short hour since he took his vows, and spoke words that no one else could hear.

While my friend held her composure and her son’s and my attention, something inside me broke and I cried enough that my husband, friends, and even the photographer (another old friend) noticed. My husband looks at me as if I’m a precious child when I cry, which of course only makes it worse.

This motherhood gig is hard sometimes.

But on this 7th anniversary I’ll acknowledge the past, relish the present, and store up fresh memories, thankful for this story I’m given to tell.

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