If the holiday season were baseball, my game would look a little like this.
Thanksgiving leads me from the comfort of the dugout and up the tiny set of stairs to the field. I’m the batter on deck warming up, practicing.
My birthday lurks, and I find myself at the plate.
Swing, batter batter batter, swing . . .
Christmas launches me to first base, the New Year to second, his birthday to third, and then the anniversary of his passing as I round the last of the holiday bases, making my way home.
But I’m not just one; I am three players in this game.
I am the Batter. With my heels dug in and my toes determinedly pointed to the sky, I dig up the earth as I resist being pushed to this plate again.
I am the Pitcher. Standing on the mound, I’m fully aware that I have the capacity to throw myself lemons mixed with a rapid succession of fastballs and curveballs, making it almost impossible for the me at the plate to gain any ground.
And I am the Coach who studies the players and waits in the wings ~ watching and knowing when it’s time to emerge from the dugout and take to the field with a bit of support and encouragement to change the trajectory of my game.
To the Batter in me, I say: Swing when you can, hit when and what feels right, and run to, not from. Walk when you need to, embrace a strike when the bat feels too heavy, and know it’s okay to miss a few.
And to the Pitcher in me, I say: Throw yourself a little mercy this holiday season.