Door Closes, Window Opens

Living near the school, I don’t have much time to think before arriving home following that first baseball practice of the season. I now realize that I need to confess to my mother, who is an RN, that my shoulders have felt weird all weekend.

Baseball activity exacerbated the situation, allowing me to experience new dimensions in pain. Just as I’d expected, no more baseball practice for me until we see the doctor.

I’ll spare you the gory details. The result? Cracked clavicle in my lead shoulder.

I wear a pressure sling for six weeks. Following that eternity, the doctor–as though he’s ordering dinner–calmly tells my parents that we’ll need another couple of weeks in the sling. Ugh.

I couldn’t wait to ceremoniously burn that sling, and now I need to begin another countdown to freedom from it. The high school season is lost, but I recover in time to play teener ball with my friends.

I never recover enough to make an impression on the high school coach. I never hit well enough anyway.

My right shoulder is never treated. I still feel that sensation across my shoulders when lifting weighty items a certain way.

Now what? I absolutely love baseball. I love to play. I love its strategy.

It’s the perfectly balanced sport between team and individual performance. Its math adds up: three outs per inning, nine innings, 90 feet between perfectly squared bases. How can this part of my life become part of my future?

I listen to games on the radio. A nationally televised MLB game is a real treat when you only receive three network stations from your antenna.

I call the local radio station for advice on how to begin a career in broadcasting. Most of the rest, as they say, is history.

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