As we age, we tend to look ahead at what there is in the future, what there could have been and what little is left.
When we hit the age of 50, people in general start looking more at the side of what little is left and what could have been. Well, this does not need to be the case and I am here to say why.
My father just turned 50 years old. I know that is the side he is looking at no matter what he says. So, here is the side I see.
No, obviously I was not there for the 50 years he has been here, but for 21 of those years I have been a part of his life and he has been my best friend. Instead of looking at the grey side of 50, I see the bright side of the past and the future.
While the clock stroke midnight in Penngrove, California to make it Nov. 2, marking 50 years of life for my father, I sat in a bed in Savannah, Georgia. No, not asleep, but with memories racing through my head.
Memories of hitting for hours with my dad, fielding ground balls in our field until my glove was about to fall off, watching the San Francisco Giants win the World Series in 2010 and just laughing together. That big, loud cackling laugh that echoed throughout the house, but sent a sense of comfort to my heart.
I remember watching him play baseball, coach baseball and hearing stories that made a movie inside my little head that could have won an Academy Award.
Growing up, I wanted to be him. I heard about the athlete he was and I saw the joy he brought to others. That was my hero.
To this day, he still is. He just doesn’t know it.
The last thing we truly did together before I left for Georgia to play college baseball at Armstrong Atlantic, was what we have done countless times. We went to a Giants baseball game.
I can’t count how many games we have seen. We have seen much bigger games. I still remember hugging behind the Dodgers dugout when Barry Bonds hit his 500th home run in San Francisco. This was different though.
This was the first game we have been together in years. This game summed up the bond of a father and son.
The Giants did not win thanks to a pair of Scott Hairston home runs, including a game-winner in the 10th inning. That was beyond the point though.
A father and son bond can be ordinary or extraordinary. This game showed this bond to be extraordinary.
Nothing was uncharacteristically crazy, but ordinarily perfect. This game was a father and son just talking baseball, waving rally rags and smiling to the smell of the grass at AT&T Park.
One statement summed everything up when my dad looked at me and said, “This is awesome! Thanks for taking me to the game. I love ya bud.”
Yeah, that was awesome. Right there sums it all up.
My dad has been a big influence on my life, has taught me the game of baseball, which has furthered my education and enhanced my life and has been my best friend through it all.
The brighter side, being the future is what I see. Continuing to help kids in baseball and making an impact on them is what I see. Continuing to make people happy and smile is what I see. The brightest side past 50 is simple. Just keep being you.
Here’s to 50. Here’s to seeing the bright side of the past and the brighter side of the future. Most of all, here’s to: “I love ya too dad.”