For those of you who know us, you know that high school and college softball have ruled this household for the past 20 years. Carrie, Katie, Colleen, Chrissie and now Kelli. The four older girls all played for John Woodruff during his LaSalle years. Carrie went on to make the Notre Dame team as a walk-on. Katie, Colleen and Chrissie all received scholarships to play for Lake Michigan College. Years of high school seasons, summer travel teams and college ball has consumed our lives. The only “break” we got were the four years of baseball with Kevin – in between Chrissie and Kelli.
I was digging through the guest room closet the other day and came across the old red/black LaSalle Letter Jackets of the older kids. Now, the purple/gold of Clay are added to that closet. I remember when Kevin first came home with his jacket – and the twins told him he couldn’t hang that Clay jacket in the same closet with their LaSalle jackets.
Tonight, we begin the final leg. Kelli starts her senior year with tonight’s conditioning. My last season of being a “team mom”. My last spring to sit huddled under three layers of blankets and afghans. In some ways, we’ve come full circle. Katie (daughter number 2) will be the Assistant Coach, under John Woodruff – her former high school coach, who is now at the reign of the Adams High School Softball Program. I’m sure it won’t be easy for either Katie or Kelli when Clay and Adams face off this spring.
I remember three years ago, as a freshman – Kelli telling me how an upperclassman on the team had taken her “under her wing” and what that meant to her. Last night, I attended the Athletic Board Meeting as we begin our preparation for our Athletic Vegas Night in March. A freshman mom sat with me and told me that her daughter had come home the night before – all excited because “Kelli Knight said “hi” to me today at school”. The upperclassman taking a new freshman under wing. I guess what goes around – comes around.
At that moment, I couldn’t have been prouder.
After 20 years, I’ll have my life back this summer.
Will I miss it?