graduation

There’s No Crying in Baseball! And probably not bleeding.

This past spring, I had this weird thing with my allergies. Also, I’m one now of those people that can say that, “I have allergies.” I was one of those golden children that grew up having nothing to worry about when pollen hit the air. My brother, on the other hand, had a very difficult time when spring came around. He had to get through spring, man.

Regardless, I blame Los Angeles. I never had any allergies. Then I spent that semester there and notonly did I have strep throat for about a month (partially my fault because it wasn’t until week two when I thought, “oh! Let’s stop by Minute Clinic” and then finally checked up on myself), but I also had allergies. My God, it was hard to breathe in the city of perpetual spring. Was this what I had been missing my whole life? Please, I don’t need to start now.

But it had started. A year later, despite being back on the East Coast, the dreaded nasal drudgery followed me into March and April.

It followed me right up until I found out about my current position at the MLB Network.

When I got the phone call that informed me that I would be joining the department, I, of course, immediately called home after I had heard the news. I had only a brief window of time, though, considering I got the call about the position seconds before entering the Delta Kappa Alpha last event of the year. There were people in that room that I might (and some I will not, probably) ever see again. Hahahaha, I thought. Oh God. Oh God the emotions.

Indeed, the emotions was right. I was overwhelmed and sick and couldn’t quite breathe through my nose. I had gotten a nosebleed earlier that day, but so far my nose had been reaching normalcy.

When I entered the room for the event, I set down my bags, tears starting to form in my eyes. If you know me personally, you know that I work myself to the bone. Work is my main focus in life and I don’t try to hide that part of me. Rather, it is what keeps me going. Eh, call me a workaholic. I like it. So, for this to happen, it was so overwhelmingly gratifying and humbling all at once.

My friends in the fraternity were noticing my latest charade of emotions, not knowing that this time there was a deeper reasoning behind them rather than, “I think I cut my hand on a tiny rusty nail so now I think I’m going to get gangrene.”

One of them came over and asked how I was and I started to cry. Shocker.

“Oh, oh my God, Claire,” she said. “Your nose – it’s bleeding!”

Actually a shocker.

I went to the bathroom and cleaned off for the time being, flabbergasted by the events. Baseball, blood, goodbye to people forever, adulthood, graduation. And here I was in the bathroom, once again, a grown woman, crying and just bleeding.

The second time that I got a nosebleed during the event, I went to the bathroom and I called my mom, hearing her say the familiar rational sequence of events of how to handle the situation. There was just so much blood and everything changing so quickly.

I had to calm myself down, though. I needed to say goodbye without holding a tissue to my face.

And I did. There were people that I hugged knowing I would become distant from them. There were people I stood next to wondering how they would shape my future. And then there was the fact that everyone in that room had helped me along the way, just part of the path that we all were taking at the time. I would enjoy the next time I would see these people again, and I felt fulfilled at the end of the event.

But I didn’t cry this time. Because if I did, God damn it, I’d have another nose bleed.

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