I have no regrets about ending my playing career. I accomplished more in my short career than a lot of players who grind on for far longer. Sure, those players will probably make way more money than me, but it’s not about the money. It’s not about what you accumulate, whether that be cash or stats or trophies. It’s about experiences, and wringing as much from each one you’re given.
It’s the little things I miss. The things I didn’t think I would before it ended. But then again, how can you predict feelings which you don’t know you will feel? I suppose this was inevitable…
It’s silly. I miss the feeling of running out to the mound to music I picked. My walk-out jam. The closest thing a player has to his own, personal superhero theme song, since, after all, he is dressed in a hero’s costume while it’s playing. The dramatic entrance, the announcer calling my name, the fans clapping moderately to reflect my obscurity… Music has such a strong tie to memory that when the songs from my superhero past hit me, in the car or gym or wherever, I go back. Back to the scent and sound and nerves and hope that coalesce into what a player calls life, or something like it. Something that, even in those moments of music and nerves and hope, I never truly understood.
The irony of a life lived in the moment is that it can only be appreciated when the moment is over. But how hard it is to face that moment. How tragic it is to know that we can never fully embrace the moment since we have no idea how it will unfold, nor can we go back and enjoy it when we can finally make sense of its unfolding?
Thank you music, for torturing and humoring me with a sound track to my memories that will never match the real thing, but never let me forget it was once real.