Home plate is pretty sacred in the game of baseball. It’s the place on the field where the ultimate goal of the game is fulfilled. Reaching that point means a player has traveled the entire base path and got their team a notch on the scoreboard. I have never played baseball so this is a concept I only know through watching many, many (did I mention many?) games. It’s thrilling for me watching Addison cross that final base so I can’t even imagine what it must feel like to him. In the non baseball part of our life, we have longed for our very own “home plate” for a while. We’ve wanted a place where things are stable and unchanging, as opposed to the constant change of baseball season. So with that, I am very excited to announce that we finally have our very first HOME! We closed and moved in last Tuesday and have been busy getting unpacked and working on a few pretty big house projects. Lowes has become our new favorite place; we’ve only been there about 50 times in the past week. It has been a lot of hard work but so much fun working to make this place ours. We are not even close to being done but I guess that’s part of the deal that comes with home-ownership…the work is never really done, right?!
It has been a very long road getting to this point. If there are any other minor league wives out there stressing out over not being able to buy a home, have faith! With a lot of saving (and praying) it really is possible if you have some (i.e. a lot) patience. Addison was drafted in 2008 and has only been on minor league salary ever since but we saved every little bit we possibly could and bought something that would be manageable for us no matter what the upcoming season brings. So if we can do it, anyone can! I have had to learn to be so flexible when it comes to life with baseball, I had wanted to buy a home for years and it is just now happening. BUT HEY, THAT’S LIFE Y’ALL!! Being able to accept and live with and love my current situation in life is one of the best life lessons baseball has ever taught me, and right now I seriously couldn’t love my current situation any more!
The off season has been here for almost two months and it has been sooooooooo good to settle into a somewhat normal routine and have my husband back for dinner time!! (It’s the little things, folks!). I haven’t been able to write since we have been home because even though we are home and “settled”, we have been very busy with all kinds of fun and exciting happenings. But I will be telling you more about that stuff later. Right now I’m here to fill you in on the most recent turn of events that just came into play a few short days ago. Addison has packed up his baseball gear and is currently out in Arizona getting set to play some more baseball! It was a major whirlwind when he got the phone call to play in the Fall League, we were so thrilled for him to just get the opportunity. I was also fairly disappointed that I couldn’t drop everything and fly out there with him! I do plan on flying out for a visit this Friday but we have so much going on here in Florida that I’m not able to be there the entire time with him. So for now, I will be cheering on my man from 1,759 miles away. When I do finally get out to Arizona I’ll be sure to give you all a full report on all the Fall League stuff I get to experience while I’m there!
God purposely gives us tests throughout our lives and contrary to popular belief; they aren’t are all nice and pretty and wrapped up with a satin bow. It really is tough to accept when the Lord places a rocky road in our path. I know for me personally, in the past few months when things would start to get a little tough, I’d balk at the thought that my road to travel should be turning out like it was. Every single person has an idea in their head of what they think their life should be like. We, as Christians, say our prayers for the things we want and the things we want to happen. Rarely, if ever, does an individual pray, “please Lord; don’t give me all the stuff I desire”. When we don’t get our way we usually just pout and push God away. We become spiritual toddlers. At least that’s what I did.
Last year I accepted Jesus Christ as my Savior and things were GREAT. It was my first full baseball season traveling with Addison. We had the most rock solid group of Christian teammates and friends who we had bible study with almost every week. To top it all off, Addison had just a flat out great season. Pretty much everything felt perfect in my life even though life definitely was not perfect. I call last season my spiritual high point. Nothing could knock me down. Everything about Jesus was so new to me and I was just taking it all in, savoring every moment. But the New Year and the new season came, bringing with it all new things. Challenging things. Things we could not change. Slowly I started to push back…stopped reading the bible every day. Push some more…fall way behind on my devotionals. More and more I shut off my communication with God because I felt like Addison and I didn’t deserve some of the things we had to deal with. This, my friends, is what I call my spiritual low point.
Something about that rock bottom place jolts you back to life. Just a few weeks ago, I was right there at that point where I could not get any more negative and unhappy. I was feeling so unfulfilled and worthless, and my emotions were out of control! When you are there at that point I was at, you just have to let go of everything because you can’t deal with it on your own. So that’s what I did, just handed it all right back to God and told Him to do with it what He wills.
It. Was. That. Easy.
Stuff in my life still isn’t going exactly how I pictured it would be. Just now when I think about who really is in control I choose not to worry any more. I know there is a greater plan in the works and I know that when that plan is fulfilled I will smile and wonder what the heck I was concerned about in the first place. These spiritual tests like the one(s) I have been going through are not easy, but I’ve read somewhere before that “God refines by fire”. The fire is what makes us stronger, and more reliant on Him. It isn’t fun walking through flames but when you come out on the other side – life is so much sweeter.
Baseball season 2013 comes to a close in just 10 games time! If you couldn’t tell by my absence from my beloved blog, it has been one heck of a season. Nothing really *exciting* happened but it has just been one spiritual/ mental/ physical test after another. I won’t go into the boring details but let’s just say after these last 10 days I’ll be so happy to get in the car for the long drive home and the quiet, blissful offseason! So, I shouldn’t lead you to believe that the season was all rocky roads, because it wasn’t. I have made a few more lifelong friends in the past couple of months (just one of my very favorite things about the lifestyle of baseball people). I’ve explored a few more parts of the good ol’ USA. And for the second year in a row, I’ve been able to spend a whole entire season with my husband watching him continue to chase his dream.
I’ve spent the last four months racking my brain for things to write to you all, and would always come up with nothing. But now at the end of the season I am feeling inspired once again, so I will be catching up with you again very soon!
Have you ever looked up the odds of a person playing baseball at the professional level? Let alone the odds of making it to Major League Baseball? WHEW, those numbers are insane. I read that a high school baseball player has about .5% chance of playing pro baseball – and that does not mean making it to the bigs. Of course the percentage of college ballplayers who go on to play pro is much higher (around 10%), but only because the pool of college players is a lot smaller than the pool of high school players. With each level advanced in the minor leagues these men are defying incredible odds, although, some do have better odds than others. I found an interesting article by Mike Rosenbaum from 2012 that looks at percentages of players who make it to MLB based on what round they were drafted in. First round draft picks reach the big leagues at a whopping 66%, and as you might have guessed the percentage drops rapidly from there. Addison was drafted in the 17th round, where only about 11% make it to the show. Any normal person would look at these numbers and feel defeated just seeing how unlikely it is to fulfill their lifelong dream, but if there is one thing I have learned in this whole baseball process it’s that these athletes are some of the most resilient and determined people on the planet.
Thinking about all these numbers doesn’t scare me one bit, they actually give me hope. Addison has already overcome tremendous odds to get to where he is at this very moment. I can’t even express the amount of pride I have for him every single day he goes out on that field and literally battles to make that childhood dream of his a reality. Only God knows where we are going to land in our baseball journey. Maybe it’s MLB, maybe it’s not. Truthfully it doesn’t even matter, because we will always know that he gave it his all.