Curve Balls

My uncle recently shared some of his writing with me and one piece in particular that I connected with is entitled Curve Balls. Uncle Ron says, “Curve Balls was written for a friend’s daughter who was attending a high school retreat and needed letters from people she knew. She lost her 45 year old mother to cancer a couple of years before attending the retreat. Curve Balls was my statement of her strength and ability to move forward.”

Who in this life hasn’t been thrown a curve ball?

Do you have the strength and ability to move forward?

With his permission I share Curve Balls with you today.

Curve Balls

by Ron N.

Sometimes life throws us a curve ball.
Sometimes we hit it.
Sometimes we don’t.

Sometimes we lose site of the fact that one time at bat doesn’t represent the results of the entire game and that one game doesn’t represent the entire season.

Throughout the game of life we experience batting slumps and losing streaks but we also experience hitting and winning streaks.

Some would tell us that it is not all about winning while others will tell us that it is only about winning.

Win or lose, never forget that as the innings pass there will be more times at bat and more games to play. Most important is to ensure that each time at bat represents our best effort.

When it’s your turn at bat are you hitting with your best effort?

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  • Lance

    Okay, if I’m being honest here – then the answer has to be NO, I don’t always hit with my best effort. Hmmm, what’s that saying?? I suppose, when I really look at it – those areas where I’m not giving my “best effort”, are those areas that have less meaning to me. Perhaps this says that I should remove/minimize these moments from my life. Is it always as simple as that? I think that it is, and it isn’t. It is easy to walk away – I can say today that I’m ready to step away from “x” or “y”. And I could. Can this also cause other problems? Definitely – and that’s where, with a clear conscience, I think it’s not easy. (i.e. there’s a lot of grey area)

    What I do see here, is that in those areas that really and deeply matter to us – giving our best effort, putting our heart and soul into something – this is so, so good. And in these areas, I most definitely work to give my best effort (at that moment).

    Your uncle is wise, Stacey. Life does give us all some curve balls, and sometimes we hit them, and sometimes we don’t. If we are out there, though, playing – living – this thing we call life, and we are putting our whole selves behind it, then it’s all good…even when we don’t hit it just as we’d wanted to.

  • Tess The Bold Life

    Hi Stacey,

    Nope I don’t always go up to bat with my best efforts. But when I’m thrown a curve ball my bounce back muscles get stronger even if I miss. I think we have peaks and valleys and when I’m in a valley I don’t have my best to give. I feel like I’m doing OK if I don’t unpack and take up residence there.

    That’s why it’s so good to have balance in life. Then when a curve ball comes our way we are ready to go to bat with enough energy to do what it takes. I hope this makes sense. It’s a really great question. One I need to ponder more.

  • Sara


    First of all, thank you for sharing this lovely writing by your Uncle Ron! I enjoyed reading it very much.

    I wish I could say an emphatic YES to your question, but no, I don’t always hit with my best effort, but I do keep trying. I’ve gotten better about curve balls as I’ve gotten older, maybe it’s from experience:~)

    I’ve learned that if I miss it; I can try again. This is not to say missing the curve ball isn’t frustrating, but I usually will get back up and try again!

  • Megan “JoyGirl!” Bord

    I was just reading something last night that essentially said this same thing, and it really resonated with me. I tend to have perfectionist ideals, and always want to be hitting homers and scoring runs. But life just isn’t like that. Singles and doubles are just as important, and heck, striking out, even, teaches us tenacity, patience and perseverance!

    What a lovely thing your uncle wrote. Thanks for sharing it with us.

  • Stacey Shipman

    Lance – the more I think about this I wonder if it’s possible to put our best effort in every time…or if we have to.

    Tess – I love your upfront honest! And I love how you put it “Bounce back muscles” because that’s really what it’s all about – how quickly you can bounce back.

    Sara – Even in the major leagues, hitter strike out, but they always get another chance at bat. I’m not a baseball fan (Uncle Ron is!) but I can see the parallels.

    Megan – I’m glad you liked it, and yes, striking out can teach us tenacity, patience and perseverance, great way to look at it

  • Karl Staib – Work Happy Now

    We can’t let struggles bring us so far down that we give up. I like the idea of calling them curve balls. It seems more like a challenge than a problem.

    I’m trying to give my very best effort every day. I still find many weaknesses that I’m trying to deal with, but that’s part of the fun.

    Right now I’m cold calling businesses. I’m really bad at it, but after each call I notice I’m getting a slightly better response. It keeps me going.

  • Audra Krell

    As mom to 3(!) pitchers, and after having just sat at a double header today, I loved reading this!!! The hardest thing for me to do, and it’s something I always remind our boys about, is that once the pitch is thrown, it’s all about the next pitch. We cannot get stuck in the past, lamenting, replaying, wishing life had thrown something different. We must keep our eyes on the future, that is where the prize is!

  • Steven | The Emotion Machine

    I really like this advice! Life definitely loves to throw us curve balls every now and then, but sometimes it is more important to just love the game then to worry so much about the win-loss tally.

  • Evita

    Hi Stacey

    Wonderful story to share and great food for thought too!

    So life and curve balls….well the one thought that definitely comes to my mind on this is definitely not to beat ourselves up ever for any decision we may have made at any point in our lives. Whatever it was, and however it was dealt with, I am of the thinking that everything happens with grace and perfection…yes even those things that people would call a “disaster” of some sort. All of it no matter how softly or abruptly it comes into our lives is there for our growth. It is there to give us a chance to experience some aspect of life….some aspect of ourselves and grow or experience a new version of ourselves. Perhaps to evolve to a new way of thinking or being.

    As I see it, whether it is a curve ball or a soft pass, it is all there from our own creation just at the right time when we can benefit from it the most.

  • Stacey Shipman

    Hi Karl – Everytime we do something we learn, cold calls are tough! I tip my hat to you for going for it.

    Hi Audra – How fun that it resonated that way for you! And yes I agree, we must keep our eyes open to the future.

    Steven – there is great excitement in playing the game regardless of winning and losing – I agree.

    Evita – Good points – there is always something to learn. Life is full of ups, downs and curve balls for sure. Otherwise, maybe it would be boring!

  • Rhonda Tardif

    I like the positive attitudes here And I love Tess’ description “as long as I
    don’t unpack and take up residence.” That’s good. I’ve called it landing in
    the ditch and rolling around in the mud and slime before realizing you
    really can get up out of there.

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