"You must habit yourself to the dazzle of the light and every moment of your life." — Walt Whitman
Today's prompts were well-timed for me.
Today, I am dazzled by...my husband.
I want to pay attention more to…my husband and our relationship.
Thanks to a good, old friend of mine (and now ours) B got to play in a baseball tournament up in Cooperstown (home to the Baseball Hall of Fame and the famed Doubleday Field where the tournament was held) this weekend. For those of you who don't know, B is a HUGE, like GINORMOUS - like there are fans, superfans, and then there's B - baseball fan. It's been a lifetime, but he's a former player too. We decided to make it a family affair since the kids and I had never been.
While I've discussed pre-kids and post-kids life in terms of me and mostly me - I mean, it's a journal right?!?- what I haven't talked as much about is pre- and post-kids life in terms of B and how little he does that just about him or for him. He works a lot, he supports us a lot, he's here a lot, he does domestic stuff a lot, he does dad stuff a lot, son, brother, son-in-law stuff...not a lot of B stuff. Aside from sports watching, paying attention to, writing, and talking, which he manages to squeeze in between all that other stuff.
So. This. Was. Special. And. Rare.
The first part of the dazzle (don't tell him because I gave him a really hard time for it) was watching the "gear" arrive over several weeks. The new pants he needed ("you need special pants?"), the jerseys ("don't you already have a jersey?"), the cleats, 2 pairs ("really?" - to be fair, one was returned), the new glove ("you have a glove"), and on, and on, and on. He was excited in a way I don't get to see so often and sometimes probably I don't notice. But, this time I noticed. The twinkle in his eye. He was getting dazzled and I was dazzled by it.
I debated whether or not the kids and I should join, mostly because I didn't want us to ruin his moment. We have needs, issues, logistical constraints. I wanted to be there and knew the kids would get so much from seeing their dad on the field, but I didn't want us to mess it up for him - take away any of his dazzle, that he so much deserved. We risked it.
Right before we left, he asked me, "are you excited at all about this trip?" I was tired, anxious (as I often am before we leave), didn't feel awesome, and said, "no." It wasn't true, but in that moment it was about 96.5% true. I felt badly as soon as I said it. We packed.
There was a long drive. A mediocre motel, rain. Game cancellation. Not much immediately apparent to do with soaking wet kids. But, then, then there was baseball. And well, maybe it was a little bit the uniform, but I was dazzled. It's not often my job to watch my husband do something. To perform. To do something he loves. I've seen him speak a couple of times for work and had a similar feeling, but this was different. Cooler. More dazzling. He played well. He held his own. We cheered. We watched. We listened. We were proud. I was proud.
Maybe I was fulfilling some silly "player's wife" fantasy, but I think it was just kind of awesome to have this time to bear witness to my husband fulfilling a dream, and to really focus on him, and just him, for a whole weekend (minus all the day-to-day family stuff we/he squeezed in seamlessly between the baseball playing). And, well, the uniform(s) didn't hurt either.
Photo Credit: James Pugner