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Humility for starters. Exactly one year ago, my son was redshirted and when I heard those words they were almost too shocking to believe. I learned that I needed to be strong for him as opposed to being a shoulder to cry on. To speak frankly with him. Believe the best advice I could give when there was a setback was to work harder rather than waste anytime feeling sorry for himself.

Learned that there are lots of great players in college and you just don't go there and throw your hat in the ring with them. You have to earn everything and actually fight for it. The college game or the pro game for that matter brings out the competitive side because every kid wants something and generally wants it very badly. Every kid was a star in high school and you become just one of many.

Learned to lower my expectations because that made life easier. It is better to be pleasantly surprised than disappointed.

Learned how exciting the pleasant surprises can be at the next level Smile
That I am raising a young man, not a baseball player. That when that day comes that he can no longer play, whether by injury, lack of talent or age, that it is my responsibility to produce a man who can handle that fate and go forward never looking back. I have come to understand that it is the depth of the child that I am raising that is most important to him.
I had a level of respect for my son as I am sure you all have of your own son. No one knew the real man inside the boy/youth/young man but God. As the freshman & sophomore years have come & gone, I have an even greater respect for my son, the man. A respect that grows daily.

During the fall of each of the past three years, he wakes earlier than most college students around the nation. Probably earlier than most of us & he works out with his team-mates before attending class. Stays up late completing course requirements, then does it again the next day & again & again until the coach says your done.

During the spring of the past two years, he has prepared himself faithfully, mentally & physically to step on the rubber & face some of the best hitters his team will face. This has included nationally ranked NAIA in the pre-season, at times DII or the best DIII has to offer. This includes some of the most historically successful DIII programs in the nation.

When not taking his turn on the mound, I watch his cheerleading skills. He knows & demonstrates a pitcher is only as successfuly as the team he supports & the coaches.

I have witnessed his taking charge of his course schedules each semester. He has signed up, attended and successfully completed summer classes to maintain his goal towards completing his education on his planned schedule.

I know he continues his growth thru Christ by reading his Bible & attending church.

What have I learned?
Respect of the student. Respect of the player.
Respect of the Christian. Respect of the man.

My respect grows daily knowing that he continues this work ethic as a non-scholarship athlete.
I see in my son what the saying "Love of the Game" really means.
what things have you learned ABOUT YOURSELF

There were no real changes in me (except my travel schedules) when my son made the steps from "T" ball to professional baseball. I think I knew all these things about myself from the beginning.

1. I know very little about baseball.

2. I'm not the average baseball parent.

3. I do not wear rose colored glasses.

4. I have the ability to listen to --- and follow the advice of others.

5. I can paint the corners of the plate but only from 5 ft. away while sitting on a five gal bucket if I toss the balls in an underhand motion.

6. My reflexes are such that a 95 mph FB will reach my body before I can touch it with a catcher's mitt.

Last edited by Fungo
I have learned that every effort his dad and I have made for him is evident in his present day successes. He is now 22 - 23 next month- and he is a competent adult, successful student -on the presidents list a couple semesters, caring in his relationships with his family and fiance and someone I really like.

I look back and find out that I was much stronger than I have given myself credit for and I made some very good decisions where he was concerned that were difficult at the time. I held him accountable when it would have been easier to go about my business and take the easy way at the time. He is my stepson, came to live with us when he was 10. Our relationship was horrible and almost unbearable for the most part of his teenage years. He didn't turn out this way by wishing it so. I really like this kid.
YourBasicMom - That's a wonderful post!

I think that I feel somewhat affirmed as a parent. My son is in college as I always expected he would be, but somehow feared he wouldn't as he hated school. He's a compassionate and caring individual, loyal friend, loving son and brother who understands that the importance of an education. I feel proud, blessed, and thankful for the choices and paths I have chosen in raising him.

I have learned that I can find other things to do with my time as he's left the nest and my daughter is close to doing so. I am more than just a mom.
I've learned how much I miss the car rides talking about the games and anything else that came up.

I've learned I REALLLY miss hitting ground balls and trying to get in "just a couple more" before it got too dark.

I've learned the rest of the family actually eats dinner on a schedule.

I've learned that I'm willing to drive 8 hrs to watch a couple of games because I know there aren't that many left.

I've also learned my golf game has a LOOONG way to go.
I think there should be a new category of posts: the hanky threads. Really need to forewarn readers about the bittersweet and teary nature of some of these posts. I'm sitting in a class right now (should be paying attention...who does that sound like??) and started reading this thread. Person next to me saw tears running down my face and asked "What's up?" And I said "it's just baseball". I sense she won't be sitting near me again!
I remember the ride to New York with mom, taking him to Rochester to begin his collegiate career. The night before we were to go home, we took him out to dinner. We had to hurry because he was busy with others doing the "meeting the other dormers," and that he had to be back by 8:00 for a meeting with his Dorm Advisor. Not much said at dinner for fear of leaving things in an un-settling manner. We asked if he wanted to have breakfast with us in the morning and he said, "would think about it" and let us know after dinner.

We drove back to the dorm where we asked again about breakfast. He quickly, but softly replied, "no, he didn't think so" and proceeded to give us hugs and said to call him when we left in th emorning. Talk about emotional!!!!! But all three of us held-up pretty well.

I learned that the kid who I saw everyday was now gone, becoming more of a man than I wanted him to be.

I learned after that during Thanksgiving and Christmas, to control my thoughts from quizzing him about his friends at school, what he did, and who he associated with. First semester Dean's List with a 3.93 in a Biomedical Engineering program. Add baseball with teammates, weight training, bad eating habits, and little sleep!!

I learned that when his sister gave birth to twin girls in January, right before he went back to school, he showed a side to him that really made me proud. He wasn't afraid to be with them or hold them. They were premature by 3 weeks. He spent a lot of time at the hospital. The man was getting older, qiuckly.

I learned that he has great feelings about his nieces. He purchased two pink "onesies" for them that read, "someone from the University of Rochester loves me!"

I'm learning not to pick-up the phone and call him.

I'm learning that I'm having a very hard time of 'letting go!'

He will be celebrating his 19th birthday tomorrow! I've learned not to osk him what he plans on doing to celebtrate.

I learned that I'm getting older, thank God, and that I am now a grandfather with a 19 year old in college!
Last edited by BoomerIL
Originally posted by play baseball:
I learned that being a mother of a college kid is much harder than being the mother of an infant with colic---and I was not prepared for either one.....

That's funny playbaseball! We all learn that a teenager can take more energy than a three year old (albeit not all physical) and more money than childcare took from our pockets! Live and Learn! Wink
I agree with Newcomer - somebody please pass the Kleenex! Wow - this thread brings up memories.

Agree with lafmom - I too, feel affirmed as a parent. As I 'watch' him work his way through his freshman year - I think, wow, I did Ok. I've raised a very capable, independant, responsible, contributing member of society. That's the goal - to be able to send them out of the nest and watch them fly and then soar!

What I have learned about myself is that there is a part of me that does need to be re-defined. After spending so many years traveling from game to game there is a void that I now need to fill. I have also learned that I like baseball more than I ever thought I would.
I have learned that I sent my 18 yr old boy to college and today he is a 21 yr old man.

Example: Last week he had his first game and it was not an all-star went to the game and so wanted him to have a great first outing(pitcher)and I was feeling bad for him and as well as it turns out more me.

I resist the urge to call and the next day he calls me.......I am ready to offer encouraging words but to my surprise he is excited and wants to share with me about the tax tip he just got from his finance class. It was a great tip and I will use it on my business return and night before's game was barely mentioned expect for the fact that he is already forgot about and is ready to work on his approach for the next game.

I sure wish I could be more like my have a much better perspective than we give them credit for......that's what I have learned.
I have learned I am grateful they both CHOSE to stay close to home to go to college.

I am grateful for the other parents we have met and those we have had way too much fun with on road trips.

I am proud of them both, my older son has graduated (dec) and is looking for work, has a couple offers on the table, and is working for us in the meantime for expenses/bills. The younger is on track to graduate in Dec of 09, one extra sememster for both of them.

These four years, as those of HS go by quickly. I am glad I have been able to attend so many of their college games. Even when mine pitch on a Tue, I go to Sat/Sun games. I am grateful I am able to do that.

While they only live 15-20 mins away, we don't see each other daily or weekly. They are grown men with their own lives, but know I could count on either one in an instant.
What have I learned about the parent of a college baseball player? Well, I've learned I'm capable of moving household, pets and husband across the see son play baseball....and reaching retirement age helped!

....also learned that you can only do so raise them up, but then at this's up to them.... Lots of good posts here....
I've learned that even in middle-age I still have the stamina to drive four hours to catch a night game where my son was a probable to take the mound for his first pitch in a college game, watch the entire game to see him pitch one inning of relief, then walk with him to the team bus to say how proud I was of him and how much I loved him, and then immediately turning around to drive the four hours back home to crawl into bed around 2AM, getting up at 5:45AM to go back to work. I did call my wife to warn her not to scream when I crawled into bed in the middle of the night Smile.

Unfortunately for my boy it was probably one of his worst innings in a very long time, but hey, it's a lesson in what he needs to do better in this new competitive environment. I've also learned that my most important role is as an enthusiastic and supportive fan. There's not much of anything of practical use I can say to him about his game anymore. That's between him and his coaches.
Last edited by pbonesteele

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