Expressing Thanks

Happy Thanksgiving from i70baseball.  Today is a day for reflection, thankfulness, football, parades and family.

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I spent many Thanksgivings on the living room floor growing up.  Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade was on the television and my mom was working in the kitchen on dinner, deserts and all the trimmings.  She would beg for help and get a distracted set of hands to enter the kitchen for a few moments.  My dad or I would come in, do as little as we could in order to get excused, and back to the living room to watch the parade.

As much as Thanksgiving is about all of things listed above, it was about spending time with my dad.

Long-time readers of this site will recall that I lost my father in August of 2012.  I did my best to express what he meant to me in my post “On life, love and baseball“.

I write this post sitting in my in-law’s living room, the parade on the television, my mother-in-law working hard at Thanksgiving dinner and online shopping happening around me.  Everything has seemingly become background noise as my thoughts turn to my dad and his absence from my life.

Today, I’m thankful.  I’m thankful for the 35 years I got to spend with him.  I’m thankful that he spent time with my children and that the older ones have fond memories of him in their life.  I’m thankful that he taught me the game of baseball.  I’m thankful that he spent his hard-earned money, sometimes his last dollar, to take me to Busch Stadium to watch the Cardinals.  He always took the opportunity to invoke life lessons wrapped up in baseball knowledge.

My dad was a major influence in my life.  He is the reason that I love the game of baseball as much as I do.  He is the reason I say that I love the game first, the Cardinals second.  My trip to Cooperstown with him 10 years ago will always remain one of my fondest memories.  The memories we created in and around the game stand out in my mind.

Days like Thanksgiving are hard for me.  It makes me miss him.  I’ll spend the day watching the parade wishing he was sitting next to me.  I’ll root for the Dallas Cowboys today because they were his favorite team.  His memory will weigh on my mind throughout the day.

I will spend my day surrounded by people who love me.  Distracted by the family in front of me that has accepted me so openly.  I will spend the weekend traveling home with my children to see my mom, which will bring forward a whole new wave of thoughts and memories.  Ultimately, I will spend the weekend remembering my dad and the impact he had on my life.

While that is a perfect way to spend the day, it will never replace hearing his voice, his laugh, feeling his hug or just being in his presence.  While I share in the same wish many others do today, that wish for one more day, I realize it would not be enough.

So I simply send my love out to my father on a day like so many others that I wish he was here.

From all of us here at i70baseball to all of our readers and fans, Happy Thanksgiving.  We sincerely hope that you are enjoying the time with family and the events that are important to you.

Bill Ivie is the founder of i70baseball.

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