The Year is Complete!

Please feel free to look back through the 365 days of 2010 sunrises, but "a year of getting up to meet the day" is officially completed. There will be no more new posts.


Thank you so much for visiting.
A one year blog project in which I share a process of transitions: emptying of the nest, reacquainting with my rusty intellect, plowing onward with my first full length book, entering the second half of my first century, and generally reflecting on life.

(see Dec. 29th, 2009 entry for further explanation)

Monday, March 22, 2010

love of the game

sunrise:  7:29  Clermont, Florida

I sat with a Floridian on the flight down here yesterday.  She was commenting on how flat Florida is, but when I told her I was headed for Clermont, she said "Oh, they actually have hills!"  Well their idea of hills is rather generous, but I did get a slight sense of elevation this morning.  I suppose for Florida it is significant.  Even so, I thought this street sign was a bit of an exaggeration.

Extra hour of sleep today!  Then again, I also watched a softball game that didn't end until nearly 11:00 last night.  I arrived just past 8:00, straight from the airport, and laced fingers with N. through the fence of the dugout.  Three hours later I finally got to give her a big hug when the team emerged after a triumphant come-from-behind victory. 

sunrise over the ballpark

There's nothing more gladdening to see than the particular smile that my middle daughter has when she's playing softball - particularly the smile after she has hit a triple and caught a couple of long balls in the outfield. 

In one degree or another, I have seen this look of joy and exhilaration on the faces of all of my children in the context of athletic events.  For A. it is a celebratory joy of both laughter and sheer fun; for T. it is the unbridled release of all physical constraints - she literally throws herself into the game; for S. the ultimate joy (pun intended - he's an ultimate frisbee player) is being part of a team, joy in the beauty of synchronized success in companionship with a cohesive group of friends.  And for everyone, there is that celebration of feeling one's body respond to our commands, the thrill of physical success - bones, muscle, sinew, neurons, working together to perform great feats.  At least they can feel like great feats to the user, at whatever level.

Last night there were teams playing until late into the night, to make up for the day's games that were cancelled due to thunderstorms.  When I walked down to the fields at dawn, not a soul was in sight, but you could still feel the buzz of energy in the air from all of those vital, charged up young athletes filled with the intensity of the game.  Okay, maybe the buzzing was the power lines.  But still.

There are still moments when I can achieve that transcendant elevation of being in sport.  A moment on the tennis court, swimming across a lake, hiking.  But certainly caution and creaking are more prevalent than wild abandon as I approach the onset of my sixth decade.  That may be why adults love to watch sports so much.  Sometimes, when you are watching an athlete perform his or her seemingly gravity-defying moves, or even when you watch a pre-schooler sprinting in gleeful circles around a soccer field, face to the sky, you are transported with them into that space of the pure joy of being. 


  1. You've got it just right - - disproportionate as it may feel sometimes, that joy, at least for our crowd, is palpable and remarkable.

    I think the "team" component, though a bit cliche, is extremely important. Even in "individual" sports, a good coach can bring the team concept to the top of the priority list. It really does continue to be a model for many aspects of life later on - - home, office, factory, school, church, government - - you name it. And the importance of learning how to lose with grace. Few things seem more critical than that. Just my opinion...

    I wish the historic events in Washington in the last 24 hours felt more "team-like"...

  2. Maybe the senate and house politicos should all have a big softball game.