The Boston Red Sox. Really, you write a post about love and the Red Sox? Have you lost your mind?
The Boston Red Sox are intertwined with love in so many ways for me. As a child, I went to Fenway with my dad, and they are some of my best childhood memories. I saw Tiante pitch! As a almost-teen, I went with my parents to see Carl Yastremski’s last game. When things were tough in our house, we always had the Sox. My grandma? She would sit on the porch with me at night, sitting in the dark, listening to the Sox on the radio. These are great memories, memories filled with love and joy.
As an adult, our children learned to love the Sox early on, and I have so many great Sox memories with them. Long car rides at night listening to the games on the radio. Sam and Ben’s first game at Fenway? We saw Schilling pitch, and Sam made us laugh until it was hard to breathe when he said innocently, “Wow, that guy looks just like Schilling,” as he saw a pitcher come out of the bullpen. We saw the Sox play in Cleveland in snow, having to buy winter clothes to go to the game, but had the best mustard ever on dollar dogs. We saw them in Toronto, needing to get Ben a new baseball hat because his had blown over Niagara Falls, and still have a handful of dirt from their field. We laughed until tears ran when Sam developed a crush on the NESN sports announcer Hazel Mae, and almost broke his neck racing across the house every time she was on air. When she sent him an autographed note for his birthday, he framed it, and it was the only thing he dusted in his room. Ben? Ben was so enamored of the Sox, that he wrote an essay to go to Varitek’s summer camp without telling us — and won a full scholarship! Both Sam and Ben met Kevin Youkilis, Ben met Varitek, and for all of us, Opening Day is like a holiday.
Then, in 2013, the Red Sox saved us. Literally. After October 9th, we were so broken, so sad, so tired, so overwhelmed. By seven at night, we were fried, unable to function much at all. Each night, we sat together, the three of us, and watched the Sox. We could yell, cheer, express emotion, and for a few hours, pretend it was just that Sam was out, not that he would never come home again. It gave us something simple and pure, something that we could focus on other than the pain.
The night the Sox won the World Series that year? It was the first time we saw a purely happy look on our youngest’s face. We could yell, hug, dance around, and tear up — but in happiness. I will always believe that Sam made sure they won that year, knowing his baby brother needed it.
That year, there was a double rainbow over Fenway on the first night of the series. This year? There was a double rainbow over Fenway. I said that night that the Sox would win, and I was right.
For me, the Sox kept us going at our lowest point. Our love of them gave us something simple to hold onto, and it is so appreciated.
So, if any of you have any connections to David Ortiz, Dustin Pedroia, or Terry Francona, please thank them for me.
Yes, love — the Red Sox and love.