I called Jake during my break at work today. I asked him when his first home-run was. Without hesitation he replied, "May 12, 2008". I was surprised at how quick and specific his response was. He remembered all the details of the event, he even kept that home-run ball.
Jake's ball career continued this week. He was invited to be on a city league softball team with some of his buddies. I was excited to watch. I sat bundled up in Jake's jacket on the top step of the bleachers. I watched Jake break the only two rules concerning home-runs in men's city league softball.
His first home-run sailed over the fence. He waved at me and ran the bases. Once he touched home, he was immediately called out by the umpire. Confused, Jake asked why and learned the first home-run rule.
Rule 1) In this league of softball there are two home-plates: one for the runner, and one for the fielders. If the runner runs to the fielding home base, you're out.
At a later at bat, Jake hit another home-run right over the left field fence. Again, the umpire called him out. Confused, Jake asked why and learned the second home-run rule.
Rule 2) If your team has already hit a home-run, the opposing team must hit one before another one can be hit. Equal ratio.
Jake jogged back to the dugout laughing at his mistakes. I sat on the bleachers grinning. My husband hit two home-runs.
I woke up dreading the day this morning. With my eyes still closed I asked Jake for some positivity, "Give me a pep talk". He did his best, replying, "It's Friday Sweetheart! You can do this!". I had to tell him today is Thursday. His reply: "It is? I need a pep talk". We laughed.
Though Jake's home-runs didn't count for his team, I counted them. I held his hand tight after the game, and I realized one of the happiest aspects of our marriage. Sometimes we try so hard, swing with all of our might, but something is just off. We don't know the rules. Efforts aren't enough. The timing is wrong. But even when it doesn't count for the rest of the world, when the umpire calls me out, I still have a big smile waiting for me on the bleachers. It counts to Jake. That's why I'm so happy.
My name is Maddie Townsend Topham and I am a happy wife!