October 1986…watching

Saturday morning, Megan and I dug out our winter garb and headed out the door early to go see my niece play field hockey. We stood on the sidelines, our masks, not only protecting, but warming. We watched Molly, layered up, dribble and run, run and dribble. We watched her attack the ball. We watched her play her position and wait for the ball. We watched.

Growing up, I had my hand in few different sports – softball, indoor and outdoor track, and field hockey. When I think back to those games, I don’t remember winning or loosing. I remember my teammates. I remember that feeling of belonging and I remember my Mom and Dad, always on the sidelines…watching.

One year ago today, was the last road trip my family made from CT to MA to see my Mom and Dad. It was one year ago that we each had our last hugs from my Dad before he passed four days later. That day, a weak and feeble man with a strong spirit, mustered up the strength to stand and walk us to the door. He stood there, on the sideline, one final time, and watched us pull away for the very last time.

I was watched. I was watched and supported. It made me know and feel that what I was doing mattered. It made me know I mattered. There is power in knowing someone took the time to watch. Watching, being present, can instill confidence. It can instill the sense that you matter. To this day, I know my Dad is still watching, from heaven’s sidelines and I am better because he’s up there, always watching.

november 3, 2019…watching

7 thoughts on “watching”

  1. Oh wow. I didn’t see the connection that was coming from the field hockey sideline! You wove your way to what was really important to you right now in such a seamless way, making the small story about so much more than trying to stay warm at a game.


  2. I love the way the word watching changes from a casual Saturday morning thing to a deep eternal thing. Those casual moments add up. I loved my field hockey and ice hockey watching and my choir listening, too. It added up to a lot.
    I just can’t believe that last picture of your dad. It gets me every time I see it. One of those little moments I’m so glad someone captured.


  3. I love your use of repetition in your images of watching and being watched and how it equals support. Yes, there is power in knowing someone took the time to watch. Your piece gave me memories of my brother-in-law taking time to be at all my softball games as a child. My dad died when I was young, leaving my mom with too many kids to raise. I don’t think my mom made it to a game, but my sweet brother-in-law never missed one. He has always held a special place in my life because he took the time to watch.


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