Thursday, November 3, 2016

History is Made



We are a baseball family.

A little after 11:40 p.m. last night, the Cubs won the 2016 World Series. 108 years, 10th inning, 8 runs. 108 is a magical number it looks like.

I didn't have tickets to the games (because, well, my kids need to go to college someday) but I was able to watch the games with my son, a die-hard baseball fan who lives and breathes the game all year long. He wasn't really a fan of any given team until the start of this season when he found a love for the Cubs, quite possibly breaking the heart of his die-hard Sox fan father. (Even though I dressed him in Cubs gear to sway his decision early on.)
  
 
The Cubs/Sox rivalry started in our home long ago, while hubs and I were dating. We had a Cubs/Sox themed wedding complete with a blue and black cake. He refuses to believe my old adage, "There are only two teams in Chicago: the Cubs and whoever they're playing."

    


And my Chicago-loving Sox-fan husband even rooted for the Cubbies this post-season. As a Sox fan, he knows the tremendous pride of seeing your team in the World Series; he knows the absolute excitement at watching them win it all. And more than anything else, he is a fan of Chicago and was proud to see his city back on top in a sport.

The last seven games were the best to watch with my son. Seeing him get fired up over errors by his favorite players, only to jump and scream for joy the next inning after the same player cracks a home run (we're talking about you, Baez and Ross!) totally redeeming themselves. And, in a moment of hilarity (and probably parenting gone wrong), watching him yell "GET YOUR SHIT TOGETHER!" before he covered his mouth because he realized he'd just swore in front of his mother, brought a moment of a stern face followed by a twinge of joy that he'd used the word in the correct capacity and said exactly what I was thinking.

I know some people think it's silly to get that invested in a sport, in a team, in a bunch of players who have no vested interest in you. When we look at the Cubs, though, we see the history of a game that has brought people together for generations. We see something that we can share with our parents and grandparents and great-grandparents; the love of a team that represents your city. We see a place where you can gather with complete strangers and for nine innings, feel like you've been friends forever as you cheer on your boys.

I wondered last night if the parents of all those players on the field remember a moment sitting at home, watching a game with a son who loves baseball. Or on a dusty old diamond at a ball park watching their 10-year-old learn how to make a double play. Did they know then that their son was destined for such a historic moment? Did they know those hugs and flowers on Mother's Day at a youth ball park would turn into ecstatic hugs on a major league diamond in front of hundreds of thousands of people?

For the rest of my life, I'll remember where I was when the Cubs won the World Series: snuggled up with my little baseball fanatic and biting my nails with two outs in the 10th. 

No, I didn't get to see a game in person this post-season. Hopefully one day I'll get to watch a post-season game from the stadium, and maybe - just maybe - it will be his.   


 
 

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