Monday, June 28, 2010

Seventh Inning Stretch

Soccer and hockey rule this house, so I am biased, I know, about the sports we play.  I find it interesting that my husband and I played such similar sports:  the flow, the objective and the energy of both hockey and soccer are the same.  Successful teams are seamless, and victories are won with guts and miraculous endurance.  I have my theories about the positions played by people, and whether the chicken or the egg comes first,  I think personalities fit those positions.  My husband is a goalie and I am a midfielder ( playmaker and goal-scorer).  He spent the better part of his life in a defensive mindset: stoic,  under control and curbing emotion.  I played driven by emotion; riding the waves of passion to do what needed to be done.

Don't get me wrong, he was, and still is, incredibly passionate about hockey.  What I mean is that he has found that magic formula to internalize and dissipate any emotion he may have. Because of the demands of his position, he had to find a zone of calm.  He still behaves a lot like that.  Maybe he should take up poker?

The interesting thing that has happened since we got married, and most certainly since we had kids, is that we have had to start playing baseball instead.  Not literally...we don't have a baseball player in the house...but figuratively.  We have given up our skates and shin guards to find a spot on the baseball diamond. This time of year, when my husband works nearly twelve-hour days in one part of the country, and I manage things here at home, I am the catcher and he is running around in the outfield.  The kids are staggered at positions in the infield, and as a family, we play defense constantly.  Life is the opposition...working to get hits off of us.  It is us against life, and with only two adults in the house right now, the best way to guard our diamond is to have one of us in the outfield and another at home plate.

Our roles shift in the fall when I am coaching full time and he is home more.  I chase down the long balls, and he stays closer to home plate.  Then we switch back again when hockey season rolls around and he does coaching of his own.  The reason the baseball analogy works well for our family scenario is because I have never played baseball, and my husband played on a limited basis in high school, so we are learning how to do this as we go.  We are trying to anticipate the bunts, the pop-flies and the line drives.  I can't have him flake out on his job out there in the outfield any more than he can have me lose interest at home plate.  We are a team.  When life really throws us a curve ball, the kids have stepped up to be more prominent players in our game.  The older they get, the better fielders they have become.

I love this picture of the ripped baseball, but the quote that goes with it, says it all:  "The harder you work the luckier you get."  At this rate, we are going to be the luckiest family in the world!