Full Disclosure: This post is sponsored by Phillips 66®. However, the thoughts and opinions expressed are my own.
“Hey, nice shirt.” was the comment made to me as I crossed the parking lot. It wasn’t the typical comment I get when I wear the shirt I was wearing that day.
The red C with white and blue stripes inside of the Colorado Rockies logo stood out in a region that has become known for wearing blue and the letters K and C interlaced together.
On most days I’m asked why I am wearing a Colorado Rockies shirt in Kansas City. I look them straight in the eye and say, “thanks to my dad, I grew up a Rockies fan.” The man who made the comment about my shirt, helped me answer a question that I had been trying to answer ever since I had been asked,
“How do you Live to the Full?”
Growing up in a small Western Kansas town, Denver was my family’s vacation of choice. Part of the reason was that we had access to Colorado Rockies season tickets, and being in the same division as the Los Angeles Dodgers (my dad’s team), we made the annual summer road trip west to Denver.
Those road trips, little did we know, would form a father-son rivalry that would bring us closer together than we could ever imagine. My dad thought he was raising me as another Los Angeles Dodgers fan, but what he didn’t know, was that attending those Colorado Rockies games in Coors Field, made me a Rockies fan.
Last year as the Major League Baseball season drew to a close, the text messages between my dad and I started. The Rockies and Dodgers were in a race for the National League West Division. Each night, one team’s broadcast playing on the TV the other broadcast playing on a computer, we would both text each other with some friendly trash talk, followed by frustration, excitement, or anxiety depending on how our respective team was playing.
The friendly banter resulted in Los Angeles winning the NL West, and the Rockies winning the Wild Card game against the Cubs only to be swept by the Milwaukee Brewers. Despite the Rockies no longer in the playoffs, I kept watching through the World Series, never wavering in my friendly trash talk to my dad as the Dodgers went on to lose Game 7 of the World Series (I almost guarantee you he has stopped reading after reminding him of this.)
During the winter, there was the occasional message talking about what player has been traded and who the team didn’t re-sign. But, before the first pitch of the 2019 spring training season had even been thrown, my dad threw this curveball at me… and one that I didn’t want to miss out on.
“Hey, I got Opening Day tickets to Colorado this year… they are playing the Dodgers. Think you could make it?”
Without hesitation, “I wouldn’t want to miss the start to the Rockies winning the National League West, would I?”
Showing my Opening Day ticket to the gate agent, seeing the field in front of me, the memories that we made as a family in Coors Field as a boy flew through my head. The time my dad pulled me from school for an up and back trip to Opening Day, the foul ball I caught in my hat down the third base line, and the fireworks show we all watched together on the 4th of July.
It was all there, my dad without telling me was showing me how to Live to the Full. At that moment, walking in the concourse, smelling the hot dogs, walking by the Dry Goods store, and up to our Club Level seats, my dad was once again, showing me how a dad and son should Live to the Full together.
This time, however, after our obligatory photos and sharing on social media that we were at Opening Day, together, we put down the cell phones. There was no need for the text message banter that had become the norm of a Rockies Dodgers baseball game. Instead, there we were, mountains in the distance, in Coors Field sharing in real time our love for the game that brought us both together.
He probably doesn’t even realize what he was and has been doing all of these years. His example is what I am trying to show my two boys, that to Live to the Full you have to be there… in the moment creating memories that will last forever.