Sunday, August 1, 2010

Broken-Toed Tennis Player

I mentioned last week that Mom broke her toe.  I think I need to do justice to that story.

While my sisters and I were at the National Youth Gathering, our parents were on a retreat as part of my dad's work.  The first day they were there, she was conned into playing in the tennis tournament.  Mom's not a tennis player.  She's been a Tennis Mom for almost ten years, but she's never been a tennis player.  A few months ago, she decided to pick up the racket and give it a shot.  She'll be the first to tell you, she's not very good.  Lucky for her, she was partnered with one of my sister's friends, a stellar tennis player and a great guy.  Neither one of them wanted to play, but they weren't really given a choice.

That night, she had to go to the bathroom in the middle of the night.  Feeling smug, she pulled out her flashlight, but it was brighter in the dark room than she expected, so she turned it off.  She'd turn it on, look, turn it off, and take a few steps.  It was a fantastic plan.  Until she realized the bench at the foot of the bed was wider at its base than it was on top.  SMASH!  She moaned and face-planted onto the bed.

"There were women screaming and falling into my bed at 2am," Dad says when they co-tell what happened.

In the morning, there was still the tennis tournament to consider.  Mom taped her toes and shoved it in her tennis shoe... She felt the skill level of the first match was pretty even, and they won.  The second match was harder, but as her opponent got riled up, her partner got fancy.  He did most of the work, but she still had to serve and return serves.  They won the second match.  That meant they were in the championship.

"Whatever you do, do not let the ball go to him; always hit the ball to her," said Mom's opponent.

They were playing a nine game proset, that means first one to nine games wins, and they were up 8-5.  Again, her partner is an amazing tennis player and did all of the work, but he's so easy going that he didn't care.  Mom decided since the match was not on the line, she wanted to try something her coach had been teaching her. 

Her partner and opponent were rallying cross-court from the baseline.  At the net, Mom stepped into the center of the court and poached, my trademark shot.  She volleyed the ball; it went over the net and dropped.  There was no possible way for them to hit that ball.

Mom jumped up to cheer that the poach actually worked.  Then reality set in.  That wasn't just a great shot, that was the game-winning shot.  Game, set, match, tournament!

Mom jumped up to cheer realizing she, an amateur player with a broken toe, just won the tennis tournament.

And she wonders why we give her no pity for her injury. 

<>< Katie

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