Last month I started my Meals and Munchies series. This month I am implementing Thankful Thursday. Unfortunately, I missed the first Thursday of the month due to a migraine. Ironically, my “thankful” for the week was probably the culprit for causing the migraine. But so worth it……..
My thankful moment this week is going to the WORLD SERIES!!!!!! As you know, I’m a Clevelander. What you don’t know is that baseball runs through my blood. I started playing softball around age 6 through my senior year of high school competitively. There were many summers where I played 3 and 4 leagues running from one field to another and loving it all. My parents had season tickets to the Indian’s and I spent my time outside of playing softball watching baseball. My father’s speech at my wedding included a story about me running through a fence to catch a pop fly in left field. I LOVE BASEBALL!
I grew up memorizing each line to Major League and A League of their Own. They were movies that taught history of baseball and the always looming thought that even when you are down, the championship game can be right around the corner someday.
That “someday” was last Wednesday. On game 7, I approached it with hopes of a movie ending. I was so proud of Cleveland. My whole life, people have had sarcastic and somewhat nasty things to say about Cleveland. To those who know the city, it’s a very special place and I’m so happy people are finally seeing it for all that it is.
After the game, I had a migraine for 2 days and didn’t get a chance to read or watch a lot of coverage post game. I’m wondering, did anyone talk about the most beautifully done National Anthem? The National Anthem was done with a musical rendition with the fans being the singers. It was the most beautiful moment! It wasn’t fans divided, it was America united. A feeling that many of us needed to feel with all the election tension. It wasn’t Chicago vs Cleveland, Republican vs Democrat, black vs white, rich vs poor. It was the United States. As the people around me sang their hearts out, I felt this swell of emotion and tears streaming through my eyes. They zoomed in on the violin player and I saw that I was not the only one feeling the emotions of the evening. As she sat playing for the world, tears were streaming down her face as they were mine. I didn’t look around and only stared at the flag thanking God for that moment and all of those who fought and continue to fight for us to achieve the American dream. Well done! Really well done!!!
As the game continued, we felt a rollercoaster of emotions. My dad leaned down to the Cubs fan in front of us to tell him, congrats, they may finally get their win. The man responded with saying “It’s not over, you don’t wait over 100 years and assume anything.” That inning, we hit the homerun that lit the city on fire! My tickets looked down 3rd base line and as I saw the ball rise and carry and float over the outfield fence, I felt an excitement that I had never felt. I clenched my sister’s arm, I pounded on my dad’s shoulder and yelled at that ball to get out! It was the slow-motion movie moment I had hoped for.
Once again, I didn’t look around. I threw my hands to the sky and screamed. My grandfather was an Indian’s fan and watched and took stats on my softball career forever. In that moment as I stood with my arms stretched toward the sky, I felt his embrace. I felt all those years of watching and playing baseball and THAT was the moment athletes and fans live for. There may have been a lot of loss and disappointment over the years, but a moment like that is what makes baseball GREAT!l
Then came the rain. I love how people were complaining that they covered the field. For me, it was a moment to go to the bathroom, cover up in my poncho (All good Cleveland fans know you bring ponchos to games) and head back to my seat. I think it lost us a lot of momentum, but that’s Mother Nature. Mother Nature also blessed us with a 70-degree night in Cleveland in November. It could have been snowing (and we all know that) so let’s not complain.
As the game ended, my heart was broken but not angry at the Cubs or fans. The fans around us were respectful and after the man’s deep thoughts, I was reminded that they had waited a long time to have that moment too. Seeing people who had all the memories, dreams and bucket lists checked off made it a bit easier to take.
Over the years, my memory has become really bad. After years of violent migraines damaging my brain permanently, I won’t be able to tell you the details of the game. I won’t be able to recall the player’s names or details like I’d like to. I won’t be able to give you stats or dates. But what I will be able to remember is how I felt. How I felt walking up to a stadium that I grew up in. How I felt singing the National Anthem with such pride. How I got to have a beer with my dad at the Cleveland World Series and hug my sister and mom in one of the most exciting moments of my life. I’m disappointed I may not be able to have a conversation detailing every inning, but all that matters is how I felt and the fact I was able to be there! For someone who is forced to miss so many events due to Migraines, just being there was a tiny miracle.
Living in a world of pain with Chronic Migraines and missing out on so much in life seems almost unbearable at times. I had a moment like the World Series to remind me what life is about. It’s childhood dreams, family memories, America’s pastime and pride and hope that someday the unthinkable can happen. It’s living in the moment and seeing that dreams do come true, even if you have to wait 100 years.
So, to begin my Thankful Thursday (posting late due to Migraine) is the World Series!!!!! It was SO much more than baseball.