As I sit on the couch with my husband Otto cheering the Cincinnati Reds professional baseball team onto a narrow victory, I can see my father erupting into a huge belly laugh wherever he is in the ethers.
Me watching and liking baseball was way beyond believability when he was alive and enjoying Saturday afternoon games on our console tv when I was growing up.
When the weekends came around, I remember yearning to go somewhere, anywhere and do something-anything. But no, we were all stuck at home because my father loved baseball and the Reds.
I hated baseball and wanted nothing to do with it. It was boring, slow and I thought nothing really happened for at least 4 hours on Saturday afternoons.
Oh how I hated baseball!
I continued to hate baseball until my husband Otto came into my life in 1997 and all of that gradually changed. He was just as rabid a Reds fan as my father but guess what?
Now the Reds were on tv every night from the end of April until October and although Otto has other interests, he still likes to watch a few games each week.
Being the curious person that I am, I saw the irony of the curve ball I was thrown and turned my attention to learning the intricacies of the game.
It wasn’t that I was trying to please Otto but rather I wanted to be with him and to find out what was so fascinating about the game.
I listened to the announcers as they explained pitching and batting strategies and of course peppered Otto with my questions which he loved answering, often multiple times until I “got” it.
I’ve discovered that baseball is very much like the soap opera “Days of our Lives” that I watched in my 20’s. I got to know the players and the dramas that followed them as they’d have streaks of doing well at the game and then not able to hit any pitch or catch the ball when it appeared an easy catch.
I became captivated by the gyrations and rituals different pitchers went through before each pitch and the batters tightening the Velcro on their batting gloves before attempting to hit the ball.
To my surprise, I now appreciate this game and love sitting watching it with Otto and sometimes when he’s not there.
So what does all of this have to do with creating and growing loving relationships?
After years of holding the belief that baseball was boring and that you couldn’t pay me to watch a game, I experienced a massive change of perspective when I opened myself to the possibility of actually enjoying it.
I’ve realized that I didn’t have to embrace baseball to love Otto and keep our relationship growing and alive but my openness to enjoying it has been a lovely expansion in my life and an added spice to our time spent together.
So what does all of this have to do with you?
You, like most of us, carry around beliefs that can limit your world, as well as the amount of love and enjoyment you can experience.
We all have perceptions about people and things, usually formed in the past, which become hard and solid and can hold us back.
For you, it probably isn’t a belief that baseball is boring and to be avoided at all costs.
Whatever your “baseball” is, like me, you can have a shift in perception, even a very slight one, that can make all the difference in the world to having a life filled with more love.
You can see someone with more love instead of irritation.
You can be open to something new that you haven’t experienced yet.
You can see yourself with more love and quit beating yourself up.
It just takes allowing a shift in perception to happen and seeing something new in the moment.
It’s just allowing that curve ball in a relationship that can magically appear to lead you to a richer experience in your life.