The amount of girls who reach out to me for some advice on the baseball life is very flattering and shockingly a lot of women! I love feeling that these girls are comfortable enough to reach out to a total stranger for some guidance. That’s something I really enjoy about this lifestyle- the girls you meet are amazing and they understand all those crazies emotions that you have experienced. It’s a good feeling to know you’re not alone. I have had this post saved to my drafts for awhile so I figured I better share it! Sorry to the girls who I told it would be posted soon.. oops!
Since so many girls are always reaching out to me, I have put together a little post about what works for me + my relationship. Not everyone is going to be this way, but this is what has worked for us and gotten us this far! Now I definitely get to see my man a lot more this season than most girls do, but that doesn’t mean we haven’t been through all the distance and BS. At one point, I was juggling a full-time school load, two jobs, two kids, and still finding a way to invest a lot of time and energy into my relationship. It was overwhelming and it was frustrating and every once in a while I would get a feeling that the baseball life wasn’t for me. That’s a very honest statement. I never doubted my relationship. But I have doubted whether or not I could keep up with this lifestyle. It is a hard to handle, overwhelming, and even intimidating way to live. Luckily I have found a great balance to keep my relationship strong while still feeling “normal” at the same time.
Here we go:
When I wasn’t traveling with Jake for the season, we always made a huge effort to see each other once a month. This usually was only for a quick three day weekend. And of course I’m the one the traveling to him because baseball players don’t get days off lol (although Jake once drove 7 hours just to spend roughly 14 hours with me during finals before driving another 7 hours back.. dedicated!) Of course the once a month rule didn’t always work for us. Sometimes we went more than a month because our schedules never lined up. One season we only saw each other 3 times total.. that was a very hard time for us/our family. So what we did was whenever I visited, we would start to plan the next trip before I left just so that we could have something to look forward to when we were saying bye. Now that Jake is at the level he is at, it has gotten to be too hard to predict where he’ll be, making it almost impossible to plan trips in advance. So as of now, we just focus on one week at a time.
Another tip for those traveling to see their man is try your hardest to fly Southwest. Your man could be moved to a different team at any point in the season.. this has clearly been happening to us lately! Southwest allows you to change flights (days, times, locations, etc) for no hidden fees. You either pay the difference in cost or you receive credit to use to future flight. I have always said that Southwest needs to hire me as their brand advocate because I love everything about their company lol. I mean TWO free bags too? Come one ladies. It’s a no brainer. If Southwest doesn’t fly to your necessary location, make sure you spend the extra money for trip insurance. I promise it is worth it.
I can’t even begin to count the number of times I have heard “my relationship only works BECAUSE of the distance.” Sounds super rude and ignorant at first.. but it’s most definitely 100% true. I hear my friends and Jake’s teammates say this all the time. I even say it now. And it’s because it’s all we’ve ever known. The minute Jake and I got serious was about 1.5 months before he was going to leave for the next 6 or 7 months. I was so freaking nervous and scared. But honestly I have always been a person who needs their space. I love my husband more than anything..but being able to come home and watch something other than ESPN while he’s gone is a marvelous feeling. And obviously us GFs and wives are the crazy ones so our men are definitely enjoying that quiet time on the road from us.
It’s hard to be away. Absolutely. But you learn how to communicate on a whole new level. Your man isn’t there with you to enjoy the little things, he’s not there to be excited with you over the babies first steps.. and he’s not there when your mother is slowly passing away. I think that experiencing moments like that by myself has made me a stronger person. I wanted Jake there more than anything, but I had to learn how to communicate those emotions to him on a whole new level so that he could see my true feelings and feel like he was there with me. It’s never an ideal situation, but you find your ways to work through it and build a more solid relationship.
Something else that helps Jake and I is that we don’t talk baseball. Ever. We have the very quick conversation after his outings that either goes, “Way to go babe! We’re so proud of you!” Or it goes “We are always proud of you Jake and we love you!” And that’s basically it. We don’t dwell over a bad outing. We don’t over talk the good outings. We just go back to being parents. I think that’s something that has really been a life savior for us. Jake has his parents to vent to. Plus they understand so much more than I do about baseball. Jake really likes that about me.. I’m not overly educated on the baseball topic which kind of gives him that necessary break from the lifestyle. It’s like I am his breath of fresh air during all the chaos. If he wants to talk about it, he’ll let me know. But I never ever try to pry it out of him. I just support him and try to cheer him on through all the highs and lows (because there are a lot of highs and lows in baseball).
The last thing that has helped me through this is finding a solid group of girls. The first game of the season at a new stadium has to be the scariest feeling for us wives and girlfriends lol. You don’t know where the good food is, where to park, and especially not sure who to talk to. Well here’s a hint. The wives and girlfriends will be the over dressed girls who are sitting by themselves lol. I can’t even count the amount of times I’ve been approached by other girl and they say, “hey are you girlfriend?” And you instantly feel relieved. It’s such a great feeling to sit through countless games with girls who can relate 100% to your struggles. We secretly spend half the games venting about the boys being lazy and sleeping all day😂 so it’s a great feeling to know you’re not alone, you’re not overreacting, and you have a support system of girls just like you. I’ve met soooo many amazing girls through baseball and I still stay in touch with them all!
Now that I’m traveling with him for some of the season, it’s a totally different experience. It’s no longer about how long till I see him, it’s more about how we can deal with the daily struggles of stretch times, late nights, and spending the majority of your time alone. Just because I am with Jake for more than a weekend at a time it still doesn’t change the fact that he has to be at the field for roughly 7 hours a day. I still find myself eating every dinner (sometimes lunch too) by myself, putting the twins to bed myself, and sometimes even falling asleep by myself. You will handle the majority of your day all by yourself, (which is why I think us wives are the expert shoppers… we run out of things to do so we just go to the mall #oops).
I have learned to master the alone time by (in addition to shopping) finding a gym to join, Pinterest searching fun things in the area, and timing out the twins nap time juuuuust right. You do whatever you can to stay busy and just wait for your man to get home. It is a hard lifestyle to adapt to, and it will definitely take a while, but once you get the hang of it, it is absolutely amazing and worth every single BS moment you’ve experienced. Even when you feel like you can’t do it anymore, or you feel like there’s no way to live a normal life, you just have to remember that there are hundreds of other girls out there who have been through what you’re going through. You may spend a lot of time alone in this lifestyle, but you’re never truly alone.