Nothing to do But Make Plans
Over his morning coffee he began laying out his plans for the week. On Monday, after teaching his seventh and eighth combination class, he would have to hurry over to the nearby high school and get the varsity baseball team started in their drills. Maybe this would be the year the juniors and seniors would take the valley championship seriously. Their small school, the smallest in their league, had come close three years in a row. If no one got sick, injured, or was held out of the playoffs, they had a chance to win the school’s first baseball championship.
His fears were exposed at the last board meeting when the high school’s principal had already threatened to keep three starters from playing if their scores on the next set of tests were poor. No “c’s” were allowed. He shook his head. If the principal punished students for grades they would go crazy at a time when so much was at stake.
He took another sip of coffee. “Too cold,” he muttered. He mixed in hot coffee and warm milk. The smug smile on the principal’s face drove him crazy. Didn’t the chance to be valley champions mean something? Of course being noted for high scholastics was great but the students needed something to bolster their goals in life.
What time would be allotted to study and practice? The students still had chores to do at home. The principal had gone to each home, encouraging student athletes to use their time wisely. “Don’t forget that life is real, life is earnest, and you have to go after your chosen goals. If you let down even for a moment you lose in the battle for happiness. Sports and games are not really important in the schemes of things.
The teacher gulped down the coffee and poured himself another cup. If the championship meant this much to him, what did it mean to the team? Grades should be kept up if possible, but they weren’t the championship. Students would not survive losing to an inferior team.
Back to his own life. How could he focus on the team, his class of seventh/eighth grades, and his marriage? His heart rate was elevated and his blood pressure was 160 over 100. Where did she go
tonight? She was not at home and their children would be fighting again.
Maybe it was the coffee that was giving him that adrenaline rush. He was tired of fighting and arguing. They could go to dinner together if he found her and the kids before it got too late. He hated making plans when nobody wanted to cooperate. If he called his father-in-law, maybe this confusion could all be worked out. He could think of no other person who would listen and be impartial.
One phone call and life would slow down. The numbers on the phone were blurry but after the third try a familiar voice answered. “I’m sorry. You’re too late. Your wife withdrew your money from all accounts this afternoon. The kids are safe somewhere. They are in the custody of the court. Get some rest tonight and put your life on hold. Nothing is important until this is all cleared up. Just go to work, enjoy your team, and have fun.”
June 28, 2017