On Monday night, Sloan wrapped up her t-ball season at Meadow Ridge Elementary in north Spokane. The forecast called for rain but after a brief shower prior to the game, the weather cleared up and allowed the kids to play under beautiful conditions. It was a fitting ending to Sloan’s first foray into organized sports.
In celebration of a successful season for the Panthers, I have five quick observations from the 2022 t-ball campaign…
Sloan’s coaches truly are saints. The Panthers were coached by Coach Dave and his two high/middle school-aged daughters. Before the season started there was some doubt Sloan’s team would even be able to play because no coach had stepped forward. Dave volunteered and we were blown away by his patience and tolerance for all team members, especially our daughter who can ask a billion questions and be a little extra.
Improvement was evident. By the end of the season, Sloan and her teammates had mastered the concept of running to first base after they hit the ball. They also started to naturally throw the ball in that direction when out in the field. Sloan’s attention span seemed to get a bit longer during the games and by last night she was actively pursuing balls that were hit in her vicinity.
It’s all about the intangibles. The t-ball itself is fun but Sloan especially enjoyed drinking out of her fancy water bottle, having us take her to the porta-potty during the middle of the game, doing her team cheer, and of course picking up her snack at the end of the game.
There is nothing like a cheering section. Sloan played on the same team as her cousin, John, so my sister and brother-in-law were at all the games (and practices). My parents also didn’t miss a game so t-ball nights turned into family nights too. It was nice to have a cheering contingent for the kids and we sure enjoyed being around each other.
All good things must come to an end. Sloan nearly cried when we told her the season was coming to a conclusion. “But I will miss my friends,” she said. Our daughter wasn’t the best player but she sure loved the social aspect of being part of the team.
As parents, it is bittersweet to see the season come to an end. It was fun to watch Sloan but we are kind of ready to have our weekday nights back. We live in the Spokane Valley so it was quite the drive to commute to north Spokane for all of Sloan’s practices and games. But the extra miles and time were worth it for the experience that Sloan received. Don’t Blink.