This I Believe

Erik - Iowa City, Iowa
Entered on April 28, 2008
Age Group: 18 - 30
Themes: sports
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This I Believe

Everyone has an activity which makes time fly and takes their mind off of all of their troubles. For me, it is the great American pastime of baseball. One of my fondest memories of the past few years was when I watched the Houston Astros win the 2005 NLCS. Although that was great, it does not compare to the feeling of being on the diamond on a warm spring or summer day playing the game I love. I have played baseball as long as I can remember, but it almost did not happen last year.

I knew going into the season that I would not start or play a lot, and being suspended for a little while did not help either. After I realized that I would probably never see the field during a game, I had to make the decision of whether to spend my summer doing what I loved in a limited role, or to work a monotonous summer job. When I asked my brother for advice, he told me something that I will never forget. He said, “Playing a game will not make you happy, playing the game will.”

It was then I realized that I had taken my favorite activity for granted, and had forgotten what it meant to me. I had become so obsessed about playing time and statistics that I had forgotten about the entire experience. It then hit me that I could still have a lot of fun just being on the team as a reserve. My brother also told me that he did not go out his junior year for the same reason, and it was the thing he regrets most about high school.

That summer I had reconnected with my love of baseball that had gradually faded away. I had fun at almost every practice, and had a good view of all of the games. The other bench players and I formed the Shatty Group, which made the season more enjoyable. I realize that unless my name gets called in the June draft, I have a very limited time to competitively play the game I love. I feel that if it had not been for the events of last year, I would not appreciate my senior season as much, and would be left stunned when it ends. I believe that everyone needs to keep their passion fresh and alive, and to never take it for granted.