This weekend marked the inauguration of a time that I've been dreading since back before we had kids, back when the cheerful mortgage broker cheerfully remarked that he hadn't gone camping at all in years and years due to his sons being in baseball. (Kids' baseball season typically goes from early April to mid-July, with two or so games per week plus practices.) At the time this felt like it would basically be the end of the world: what, no CAMPING? No getting out of town all summer ever? So that instead I can sit in the hot grass and watch short kids in funny suits bat a ball around a dusty square? I will NEVER, EVER let my kids play baseball ever.
Aaaand, nine years later, here we are. Baseball parents. For the next two months all of my Saturdays and Sundays are reserved; Silas is also practicing at least two times a week. In addition, Helen's doing gymnastics. On paper, it sounds pretty much like Melospiza Hell.
Well, I'm here to report that so far, Hell hasn't been so bad. Yes, there are better things in life than sitting around and watching your kid get creamed in baseball. And next time I will PACK MORE SWEATERS AND ALSO SOME BLANKETS AND A THERMOS OF HOT COFFEE. Preferably spiked with rum. But it has an enjoyable mellowness, this life: sitting around, calling out "Good play!" and "Way to go, Nate!" and "You can DO it, Silas!"Not worrying all weekend about Finishing Projects or Getting Things Accomplished or Cleaning the House, which is what I mostly did back in the days before we had kids. I also spent a lot of energy stressing myself out about not doing more.
It helps that I'm not working full time, and that for the most part I do have time to do some of the things I like to do. I know I will have some weekends when I will feel like I'm drowning, what with all the Obligations and wanting to do ANYTHING but drive my kid around from game to game. But these will be rare. I hope.
Also, it helps that seven years in, I've mostly resigned myself to the one of the central facts of parenthood: there's a lot of enforced waiting. This is really what I dreaded most about being a mom: my life would no longer be my own. I used to HATE waiting. I hated having to put off doing what I wanted to do because someone else was late, or sleeping in, or reading every bloody section of the everloving paper. Now waiting for people is mostly what I do. And while I still don't LOVE it, I'm a lot better at it, and furthermore, you know what? I'm a lot more pleasant to be around as a result. Who woulda thought?