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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: The Game of Life (09/11/08)

TITLE: I Love Softball
By Donna Hogue
09/13/08


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I love softball. Ever since my dad fitted me with a glove at 11 years old, I have been smitten with the game. I was the smallest on that first team. Everyone would laugh when I came up to bat and when I would run out to right field. Right field is where the coach always put the worst players. I usually didnít hit the ball when I got up to bat because I was so short, I hardly ever got a good pitch and so I usually got on base by walking andmy coach didnít mind because our team was loaded with great hitters, large Amazon women; practically knocking the cover off the ball every time. They could run, catch, slide and anything the coach asked them to do. I was completely in awe. While I waited patiently for my turn to play, I would be the best cheerleader they had and I was not bashful nor resentful; I was grateful.

I never really played on another team like that first one. My dad was in the United States Air Force and we moved a lot. That first team taught me well and not only did I gain experience, but confidence as well. The next team I played on, I played left field and even made the all-stars. The third team I played on, I was moved to short stop, the coveted infield, the desire of nearly every player I knew. That's where the action is! My coaches were very confident in me and I listened to them eagerly; I was like a sponge and I wanted to learn all I could. My coaches were also in the Air Force and their coaching was cut short by an overseas assignment. While my heart was broken, I understood; we carried on and finished out the season with pride.

The next team I was a part of, never really came together in victory; though we enjoyed one anotherís company. We were juniors and seniors in high school and the game just did not fulfill those former dreams. There were dances and dates and dresses with just the right shoes and jobs to pay for said activities and material goods. I still loved the game, it just wasnít the same priority as before. I wept when we lost each game as we were easily handled by each team. My strong, competitive daddy was so embarrassed by me and my show of weakness. I despaired.

The very last team I was part of, was a co-ed adult team and we had great fun. I loved playing again. Though not as fast as I used to be and because there were men on the team for the infield positions, I got to pitch! We won several games and lost several more, but the love of the game lives on in me. I felt revived.

The most important part of playing a game is knowing that you cannot do it alone. I loved the teamwork, the joy of working together for a common goal. Softball taught me a lot about life especially after I came to the Lord. He wants us encouraging those ahead of us as well as those behind. He wants us reaching out to lend a hand even as we succeed. He wants us alert and ready to move at a momentís notice, always aware of our surroundings. He wants us to persevere when times get tough and things are not going our way. He has given us the victory and wants us to live like we know it!


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Yvonne Blake 09/18/08
A good description of softball. Good message!