Softball is many things. Today, softball is owning a dog.

I walked in the front door exhausted from a long weekend. I had barely gotten any sleep, and all I wanted to do was crash. I needed a nap.

Upon entering my house I heard the all-too-familiar sound of a golden tail slapping the floor in excitement, and the twinkling of nails rapidly approaching. He had the dumbest grin on his face, and in that moment he lived up to the name “Wiggles.”

I came up to bed, hoping to catch some much needed Z’s from the weekend. As I lay down, I soon realized that Jack was NOT going to let me sleep. He began his ritual for attention. He slowly sought out every possible nook and cranny in my room to disrupt. He jumped on my bed, soaked my face, knocked over my picture frames, and, to cap it off, tugged the pillow out from under my head. I conceded, but not fully. I grabbed a deliciously distracting bone that allowed me enough time to get in a fake nap. You know, the kind where your eyes rest, but you don’t make it into a deep sleep. Like floating on the surface of a pool rather than being fully submerged.

When the bone was gone, so was my chance at rest. So I took him out, played with him, and he finally wound down. The next time we got in bed, he curled up into my legs. His eyes were closed, and he was peaceful. He was perfect, and I couldn’t imagine my life without him. I couldn’t stop thinking in that moment, “how could the same dog be so demanding, so relentless, and so comforting all at the same time?”

Well, because softball is owning a dog.

 

Much like Jack today, softball would offer me similar extremes. I remember being in college and having 30 minutes to myself each day to do one of three things: eat, sleep, or do homework. Typically, I would choose sleep. I would get the same type of rest that I got with Jack today. Just enough to rest my eyes, but not quite enough to rest by mind and body.

But then, at the end of the day, after a demanding schedule, and relentless amount of work, softball would curl up with me, and sleep at my feet. Just like Jack, it was perfect, and I couldn’t imagine my life without it.

Now that the game is over, I can come to appreciate the things in life that are demanding and relentlessly tiring, because those are often the things that yield the greatest rewards. Like softball, Jack wears me down, drains my energy, and consumes my time. However, at the end of the day, he gives me back more than he can ever know.

Softball is many things. Today, softball is owning a dog.

 

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5 thoughts on “Softball is Owning a Dog

  1. I am wondering why it was your weekend that wore you out so much!?

    The idea of a ‘fake nap’ struck me. “You know, the kind where your eyes rest, but you don’t make it into a deep sleep. Like floating on the surface of a pool rather than being fully submerged.” Well described.

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  2. Wow! I love everything about this slice! I could picture Jack so well and I loved the word choice in his nails twinkling. I could also appreciate your struggle as my cat does not allow me naps when I choose either. The line about “things that are demanding and relentlessly tiring” -yup- applies to so many things we care about.

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  3. Your description of your first attempt at a nap was so great. I could totally picture him disrupting you in every way possible. Then, I found myself thinking “How the heck is this like softball?” Somehow, you managed yet again to nail the comparison in a way that left me thinking and nodding.

    It’s really amazing what you’re doing here.

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