As I sit here watching the Cardinals eat the Brewers alive in the bottom of the 9th, 10-3, I pulled out my laptop to try and describe my love for this baseball team. This is already extremely difficult because I simply cannot put into words what this team has given me.
The Cardinals have given me much more than 11 World Series titles.
The Cardinals have given me much more than the above-the-average baseball performance.
The Cardinals have given me much more than the opportunity to watch so many talented men play America’s best past time.
This team gave me a childhood. I never spent my childhood watching Disney movies or wearing princess dresses. I would be this innocent little girl in my dad’s old ball cap watching old tapes of Cardinals games that my grandparents found in a box. After I would watch a Cardinals game, I would run around the back yard pretending I was Mark McGwire after hitting a home run. I spent countless hours on my old neighborhood ball field pretending like I was one of the Cardinals. As I ran the bases, I would try to imitate Mike Shannon’s original “Get up, baby! Get up!”
The Cardinals gave me a special closeness with my parents that I will forever cherish and enjoy.
After my mom passed away and I was going through her things, I came across this:
This is what the Cardinals gave me. They gave my parents the opportunity to teach me about something that they were also passionate about – thus, creating a special bond between them and I. This is what created so many great memories when I think of my parents. Even though they’re gone now, baseball was one thing that I knew always made us happy as a family. A special thank you for that, Cardinals.
To this day, I still have that same joy that I had as a little girl. From the first day I started to discover what baseball was, that passion never really stopped growing. Losing my parents came with depression, anxiety, and so much more. Although, turning on the TV to watch some baseball made that temporary for a little while. After a shitty day, I would set all of my issues to deal with later, forget about them for a little while, and watch the Cards play. Why? Because nothing will ever bring me more joy than this game that I was blessed to be exposed to. And, sure. The Cardinals are the type of team that will get your blood pressure on a sky rocket level, but that is all part of the adrenaline that comes with being a fan of this particular team.
Even when I step into Busch Stadium, it is a paradise. It’s just something about that feeling when you step into the gate and you’re exposed to the light that hits the field. I just stand there and feel like I died and went to Heaven. I will sit in my seat and just stare onto the field. Right before my eyes was an American past time that will forever be apart of my life and it will be something that I will never be tired of. I have been to Busch more than anybody can count and I swear it is like the first time every time. I don’t think that there will ever be a feeling that compares to that.
Another thing that makes this team so amazing is our fan base. If you’re reading this, it’s probably because you follow me on Twitter. I have made so many friends through this team. I have never met more funny, smart, knowledgeable people. Some people outside of the Twitter fan base may think I’m crazy for thinking this way about people that I have never really met in real life before. But it’s something about that special bond that brings this community together. We have went through winning years, losing years, losing players whether through trade, or even death.
People hate us because we are fans of such a great team. People try and put us down every time the Cardinals go wrong with something. We are a big target to other teams and their fans. Quite frankly, this is an honor. I am a firm believer that people wouldn’t hate us if we weren’t such a good team. But, we are and we should be happy that people hate us. Sorry not sorry.
I am happy to be a fan of a team that is considered “bad” when really, we are playing on an average level. We have been so used to winning, winning, winning all the time. Despite the slump this year, I would never want to be a fan of any other team.
So, Cardinals and Cardinal Nation, thank you. Thank you for my childhood. Thank you for the memories. Thank you for the experiences. Thank you for the friendships. Thank you for the heartache that made me a stronger fan. Thank you for everything.
Thanks for reading my sappy ass article. If you don’t already, follow me on twitter here.