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(Anthony Hewitt/DVIDS)

Spring sports have started where we live. My 10-year-old is playing baseball this season, which is a first. (I'm not counting T-ball when he was five.) After years of soccer, we thought we'd give baseball a shot. When I signed him up, I also signed up the husband.

I learned a long time ago that it was more fun for me, to have the husband be on the other side of the field coaching the game then next to me wishing he was coaching the game. The worst was when he would come home from sea mid-season -- he would be "forced" to sit on the sideline.

Our current base doesn't have a youth sports program. I'm beginning to realize just how much I miss this perk.

I have found there are many things unique to a base youth sports program:

  • Hearing the coach on the U10 soccer field yelling, um, I mean "coaching" his kids while you are on the U12 field.
  • Stopping practice for colors.
  • Moms sitting in the bleachers sharing deployment stories and talking about different duty stations.
  • Watching kids see their dad for the first time after they've been at sea for 3 - 6 months. (Keep in mind they've had NO phone calls, no Skype calls, only a handful of emails and a little bit of mail.)
  • A group of moms taking their kids to McDonald’s after practice/game, since there is no one to cook for at home.
  • The Gunny stopping the young Marine in the parking lot for not having his uniform squared away.
  • Seeing that other mom on the field that has a USS Where My Husband Works T-shirt on, so you practically sprint over to her to see if she has any news on the boat.

Lots of things are different for us at this duty station, some things are definitely better, but as far as youth sports, gosh, I sure am missing the "difference."

The one thing that I'm still totally loving -- the husband being home to coach, oh and -- his black coaching shorts.

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