Thursday, July 10, 2014
Throwback Thursday: Daddy's Girl
My mom told me that when I was little, I was a Daddy's girl. He was in the Navy, & I was devastated when he went out to sea for long periods of time. I couldn't bear for him to be away. I would kiss his picture on the refrigerator every night before going to bed.
As I grew up, I became less of a Daddy's Girl & more of a typical teenager. I couldn't understand then that when my Dad said "no," it was because he loved me & wanted the best for me. As a self-centered teenager, it seemed like every time my dad didn't want me to do what I wanted to do, it was because he was trying to make my life absolutely miserable. He was my dad, & I knew he loved me, but dads are supposed to make their kids miserable, right?
It wasn't until college that I started to look at my dad as more than just my dad. In 2002 I went to my first RedSox game. My Dad has always been a diehard fan, but this was the first time I fell for the boys in red socks. That fall the RedSox made it into the playoffs as a Wild Card team. I felt an excitement rise in my chest like I had never felt before. I died a little when their losses to the Yankees ended their World Series run.
In 2004, the team was something special. They were "the idiots." You could feel the true camaraderie in this team, & I wondered if they would be the RedSox team to win the World Series for the first time since 1918. It was when the RedSox began their postseason that my dad & I started emailing each other. We talked about the team & the highs & the lows from the previous games. We talked about what each win meant. I had only been a real RedSox fan for a couple years, but my dad had been a fan all of his life & had never seen a RedSox World Series win. He talked about what that meant for him. We talked about how we held our breath with each strike, each ball, & each hit. My dad was sharing his thoughts & feelings with me like never before.
When the RedSox won the World Series that year, I can't tell you the joy & elation I felt. I felt so fortunate that I was a fan when the RedSox made history. My dad was the first person I called. He's been my first call after every RedSox World Series Championship (& Patriots Superbowl Championships) since.
There's an amazing thing that happened with my mom & dad sometime between the time I left for college & got married, they became more than just my parents. They became my friends. I can talk to them as a peer instead of as a girl who is pretty certain her parents are trying to ruin her life. For my dad & I, the RedSox were a big part of how that happened.
I continued to go to RedSox games in Boston & at other ballparks on the east coast. When they lived in New Jersey, I gifted my dad & my siblings tickets to RedSox games in Baltimore. My family lives in North Carolina now, far away from any ballpark where the RedSox might play. When my dad is visiting Rhode Island, we've gotten him tickets to see the RedSox play with your daddy & Papa. We even took the family on a tour of Fenway. Yet, I had never gone to a RedSox game with my Dad- until last weekend.
Your daddy & I talked about what we wanted to do for Father's Day gifts this year. When I learned that my dad would be in Rhode Island for 4th of July weekend, I checked the schedule to see if the RedSox would be playing at home. We were in luck! This year we got tickets for all the Dads (Daddy, Papa, & Papi), but I wanted to go too (& Grandma did too). This year I finally wanted to share the experience of a RedSox game with my Dad.
The RedSox were playing a double header that day, & we listened to the first game on the radio on the way up. Just as we arrived, the RedSox won their first game of the day in overtime. Excited, we headed to Sweet Carolines for dinner before our game.
Then my Dad & I did some RedSox gear shopping. He got a rain jacket, & I bought a new hat before heading into the ballpark early to watch the team warm up. I was so excited to walk through Fenway with my Dad. We watched Ortiz put his arm around Napoli. We talked about who we thought was playing that day. We enjoyed being at Fenway on such a gorgeous day.
The RedSox did not win that night, but I loved sharing the fan experience with my dad. I loved that he got just as annoyed with the incessant start of the wave as I did (he's pretty sure it threw Lackey off & was the reason we started to falter in the game). I love that he cheered for every RedSox hit. I love that even though the RedSox were losing in the last inning & it was late, he was happy to stay for the whole game. I love that he laughed with me when I called a Steven Drew home run just before he hit it (your daddy wishes the Redsox would trade Steven Drew & we teased him about it all night). I loved having the opportunity to share Fenway with my Dad for a night.
I'm so thankful that my dad & I have the RedSox & the connection we developed through them. I hope my dad & I are able to share many more RedSox memories together- & that someday you will be excited to join us in RedSox game fun.
I love you so,