We recently learned our preborn, first grandchild is a boy! It was hard to tell in his first photograph. He just looked like a tornado.
But, now we know. So, we’re thinking blue and Tonka trucks and Spiderman underwear. Who-hoo!
That tiny tornado of energy is now about the size of an apple. Or maybe a baseball. I could hold him in one hand, if he was here already, which I’m glad he’s not, because he still has growing to do. So, I’ll wait. In the meantime, I’ll write him a letter:
I wanted you to know I’m making you a quilt. Something to keep you warm and cozy on chilly nights and something soft to lay on once you begin to rest on your tummy and practice lifting your head, which will feel like a bowling ball when you first start. You’ll bang your nose against the floor while you’re getting the hang of it, so you need a soft quilt under you.
There’s a theme with this quilt, as you can see. Someone who is already smitten with you (your dad) loves baseball, so I suspect you will hear a lot about it as you grow up. See this fabric here, with the blue baseball gloves? I made a quilt for your dad with some of that same fabric, so you will have matching quilts, kind of. His is worn out because he likes it so much and has used it a lot. I hope you like yours too. If not, your dad may snag it.
In the many tales of baseball you will hear from your dad growing up, one will be about a very honorable player named Cal Ripken, Jr. He played 2,632 baseball games in a row.
He never missed a game during 16 seasons of major league baseball. This broke a record in baseball, because the last number of games a player had played in a row (his name was Lou) was 2,131. So, Cal was celebrated and highly praised for coming to work every day and working hard to play 2,632 games of baseball in a row. Your dad will undoubtedly tell you about Cal Ripken, Jr. (Click here for video of Ripken’s record breaking moment: RIPKEN’S 2131)
I’m telling you a bit about Cal, because how he played baseball taught us all some lessons about life. Sometimes it’s very tempting not to work hard, even though you have promised to do so. You will meet people in life who will look for an easy way around work. You will meet people who will say they are going to do something, and then they don’t. Cal didn’t do that. He was a man of his word. He showed up at the ball field every work day and did was he was expected to do.
Cal Jr. got a lot of attention for playing 2,632 games of baseball in row, but when he was asked about it, he always responded that he was just doing his job. He didn’t think going to his job every day and working hard was anything exceptional. He was humble about his dedication and his commitment. He was a responsible, honorable ball player. And many young kids (and grown ups too) really admired him. He showed us all what a good man looks like.
I know your mom and dad will teach you how to be an honorable boy/young man, too. They will help you learn how to work hard, how to do things you don’t want to do, and keep the promises you make.
But, in case you don’t pay attention…Cal Ripken, Jr. is a good guy to read about and learn some life lessons from. You might pick up a few tips about baseball, too.
Waiting in the dugout to meet you.