On a Saturday afternoon when football fever was running high in South Bend, Indiana, a Notre Dame student was brought into the hospital where I was on duty as a nurse.
He had acute appendicitis, and as I prepared him for surgery I asked if he wasn’t terribly disappointed to miss the big game.
"Oh, I won’t miss it," he said. "Doc is giving me a spinal anesthetic so I can listen to it during the operation!"
Standing on the sidelines, during a game being played by my school’s football team, I saw one of the players take a hard hit. He tumbled to the ground and didn’t move.
We grabbed our first-aid gear and rushed out onto the field. The coach picked up the young man’s hand and urged, "Son, can you hear me? Squeeze once for yes and twice for no."
Blood may be thicker than water, but baseball beats them both.
I learned this after explaining to my two boys that they were half-Lithuanian on their father’s side, and half-Yankee, meaning their other set of parents came from an old New England family.
My younger son looked worried. "But we’re still a hundred percent Red Sox, right, Mom?"
It was a long season for my son's baseball team with a 0-11 record. All of the players were new and prone to errors, strikeouts and poor pitching.
One Friday afternoon my son came crashing through the door and announced his team had played the best game of the year. "What did you win by?" I asked.
He replied, "Oh, we were beat 32 to 2, but it's the first game where no one made an error!"
Success comes in baby steps.