Mike Cope's blog

Saturday, May 29, 2004

Yes, yes, last night went very well. We won first place (8-4) and get to enter the area tournament as Key City team #1. This morning I was back at the field for a while helping with some cleaning to get ready for hosting tournament games. I got to clean to the best background "music" possible. We always have the best tunes there--including many of the songs nominated on this site a few days ago. But this morning I cleaned with the sound of cheers behind me. It was a game in the Challenger League. All the children playing were handicapped. Most had parents right next to them, helping them bat, assisting them as they fielded. Every time someone is announced coming up to the plate, every person in the stands cheers. Every time they swing (whether they hit it or not), everyone cheers. All right, so the game is "rigged." Everyone swings until they hit the ball. And when they hit the ball, they're going to be safe at first. There were wheelchairs flying around the bases. I spoke to one of the adults who told me that one of the girls playing had woken up early that morning and was giddy with excitement about the game. No one makes an out. No one is embarrassed. No one gets yelled at. No one gets nailed with an error. Everyone hits; everyone gets on base; everyone scores. I like this game. I think Megan (our daughter who was mentally and physically handicapped, for those blog readers who don't know us) would have enjoyed it, too.

9 Comments:

  • I have this great mental image of Megan playing. She would, without a doubt, have been the most competitive and atheletic player out there. She would have LOVED it! It makes me hope that one day we'll see her running bases in Heaven singing "I'm in the Lord's AR-MEEE!"

    By Blogger Brandon Scott, at 5/29/2004 12:06:00 PM  

  • Sometimes (okay, usually) I don't have anything useful to say, but I always want to let you know how much I appreciate posts like these.

    I've worked with handicapped children and adults for a long time now; it's been one of the most rewarding experiences of my life.

    My aunt Genave is severely mentally handicapped and has the additional physical complication of cerebral palsy. My nephew has Down's syndrome. These two people have shaped my life probably more than any other. If I were more like them, I'd be a much better person.

    By Blogger Q, at 5/29/2004 12:19:00 PM  

  • Congrats! I coached my son through T-Ball and Coach Pitch. I'm sitting out his first year of Minor League so I can just enjoy watching him play. But I look forward to coaching again. I hope you success continues through the tournament.

    By Blogger Jeff Slater, at 5/29/2004 03:59:00 PM  

  • Congratulations to Bach's for backing a winner! I too enjoy your posts, especially when you share Megan with us. I had a good friend who lost a beautiful, normal son at six years of age. My friend had to watch as his son tried to cross a farm to market road as an oil field truck approached. My friend's comment to me (several years later) was that when you lose a child you never get over it, but hopefully you learn to live with it. I like the fact that my friend's son, Travis lives on, and I like it that Megan lives on and that you choose to share her with all of us. God Bless!

    I have been reading your blog since Grant revealed you as an unabashed blogger! I told my wife I feel like a window peeker or a stalker. Her remedy for correcting this is to allow you the same opportunity! My blog is: detales.blogspot.com/ I am not a scholar but I enjoy it all. Blog on!

    By Blogger d, at 5/29/2004 06:12:00 PM  

  • Safe. What a great word in baseball............and life.
    "Safe, in the arms of Jesus,"

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 5/29/2004 07:08:00 PM  

  • This experience is rich with ties to our spiritual walk. The one that stands out most to me is that the only way not to get home is simply by refusing to play.

    By Blogger chrismith, at 5/30/2004 05:49:00 AM  

  • Ahhh! This sounds like how it will be in Heaven with God! Great entry!!

    By Blogger Haile Nkrumah Gault, at 5/30/2004 11:12:00 AM  

  • The cleaning Mike did was some cleaning that not many around the league would do, and he came up with the idea without being asked. And while I was blessed with his volunteering for a dirty job, he in turn was blessed by being at the ballpark. Next Saturday is the last day for our Challenger League this year. Everyone is invited to be blessed at 9AM. Thanks, Coach Mike

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 6/01/2004 01:50:00 PM  

  • Last Saturday morning I found myself washing windows at a Truck Stop as a part of a fundraiser. It had been a boring three hour shift, until I found myself looking through the windshield at the very proud face of a young "Challenger" polishing his trophy. He was heading back to Sweetwater with his grandparents after Closing Ceremonies. He could'nt talk, but his smile said a ton. His grandparents however could'nt say enough good about the program.

    While the "Un-Challenged" trophies will be displayed proudly for a few years, and then put away because it's "Little League", the Challenger League trophies, I imagine, will be displayed for life.

    The next hour of washing windshields was much easier as I thought of those I knew back home who were a part of making this young man feel like an "All Star" who just won the World Series and was named to the Hall of Fame in one day.

    I thank God for the Challenger League and all involved!

    Buster
    (Sorry for the Anonymous)

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 6/14/2004 01:03:00 PM  

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