The Catcher in my Eye (or what Little League meant to me)

Field day meets final game/ Mama C and the Boys

The little league season ended last night.

Things I won’t miss:

  • furiously looking for the mitt that was in the special mitt place an hour ago?!?
  • planning ahead to make sure the uniform is clean for the third game this week?!?
  • deciding on the dinner dilemma for a 5:30 game.  Not enough time to pack a picnic vs. the cost and aggravation involved when our eating out behavior and our playground behavior look remarkably the same.
  • Are the people we invited to come watch coming?
  • A tornado is headed this way?  Why are we here?
  • White uniforms ? Kids standing in dirt? Whoever picked that color?
  • What if he doesn’t hit it well this time?
  • Hearing Sam yell; “Mom you are NOT the coach!” in response to my gentle reminders to STOP THROWING DIRT!!!! or EYE ON HOME PLATE at the top of my lungs.

Things that I’ll miss and miss and miss

  • Sam choosing his fierce pink socks to go with his black baseball pants, and now greyish uniform shirt. Sam choosing pink because all his girlfriends love pink, so he does too.
  • Having a throw-whatever-you-can-grab-and-put-in-the-bag picnic on the bleachers, and no dishes afterwords.
  • All the time with the parents who I came to know, appreciate and feel a surprisingly strong connection with because we were all on the “same team”.
  • Feeling like no one cared that I was a single mom. Correction: me not caring that I was a single mom. We were all the moms, the parents, the fans.
  • Having so many of our friends come to the game, giving me an hour to be in adult company with a game in front of us, and a playground behind us. Ideal location.
  • Watching Marcel race toward his new friend L every game. The siblings of the athletes–a role Marcel is getting good at.
  • Being the team photographer with my little i-phone, and capturing it all for a collage for the three AMAZING coaches at the end of the season. (Printed up via Shutterfly, printed at Walgreens, and popped into 3 frames for $1.50 each at the Salvation Army–each unique.)
  • Feeling the sound of the ball hitting the bat in my stomach. Watching the boys in total joy when they hit, ran, or made a great play.
  • Watching the team get so much better.
  • Being the mom of a kid who always will hit it this time.
  • Going to get a slice or three after the game, with dirty, worn out starving kids who for the most part stayed in their seat, if the slice came really fast, and the lemonade or the root beer because it is a special occasion arrived quickly too.

At least we still have the closing ceremonies next week. A trophy to hold. An opportunity to plan a playdate. Maybe even suggest a little beach reunion of the team families at the beach in July. And, I never ever liked baseball as a kid. But we’ll keep that part quite OK?

Have any team sport joys to share here? Are you easing into your role as a spectator and not a player with ease and grace? How is the “you are not the coach mom (or Dad, or Uncle) playing out for you? Are you feeling othered? Accepted? Marginalized?  Or are you just having fun?

(reminder: one click voting for coolness can be placed here. thank you.)


  1. Catherine, it has been a joy getting to know you and cheering for the boys of Maine Paint. Your enthusiasm and boundless energy are infectious. Here’s to pick-up baseball, soccer, basketball and whatever else with the boys this summer.

  2. I can’t WAIT for all that stuff!! I’ll be the old lady on the sideline but whatever! one mroe year before theo can start Blast Ball. Woo Hoo!

  3. Jupiter scored two goals last Sunday at youth soccer (prompting me to whoop loudly before I even realized I was whooping). She would have had three, but one of the girls on her team was standing in the way so the ball bounced off the other girls shin guards and back out. Soccer is VERY big in our town…and it scares me a little how Seriously some of the parents take K-1 soccer. It’s K-1, for pete’s sake. Some of the kids are little soccer turbomachines and half the time Jupiter is spinning in circles or rolling around in the grass. We are the ones still there for fun…

  4. Great list Catherine!
    My favorite things about coaching
    -having the pre game catch with hagen
    -throwing pitches that james and howard tagged for “hits” and see heir face light up.
    -watching Sam step into the pitch like a natural.
    -toby and chauncy running onto the pre game field for a catch
    Seeing moms and dads cheering, reminding me of my little league days.
    -watching Benu and Ben run the bases like it was a world series.
    -Carlos’s big league lefty swing.
    -The co-coaching approach, and parents stepping in as dug out referee’s.
    -Riding bikes along the back cove and Prom in route to the Saturday games, not to mention the Casco Bay views.
    Being appreciated as a coach with thank yous from parents and players
    Go Maine Paint! and don’t hesitate to call a midsummer practice/reunion for a hot summer night. Hagen and I will show up for sure.

    Thanks again for the photos

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