learn to forget things…

There’s been so many things that I’ve experienced, seen, and heard in the past few days… I contemplated blogging about each thought… However, I’m slightly aware that when I blog, I’m inviting the public to read my thoughts… so I feel responsible to process my thoughts before I put them in writing–at least enough to be somewhat coherent.  So here goes my first somewhat processed thought…

I went to go see a one-man play this week.  My old roommate had tickets she couldn’t use… so thankfully I was the beneficiary of her kindness and her schedule.  Well, of all shows to see, it was about sports…  and of all sports, it was about baseball… and of all teams, it was about a former Dodger player… I can watch baseball, but I’m not a huge fan, and I’m especially not a fan of the Dodgers.  If anything, I’ll root for Kansas City Royals only because I’m loyal to the team that won the world series back in 1985 when I lived in a small town in Kansas (I know that the Royals really suck right now 😦 ).  Anyhow, the play is called “Juan and John.”  It’s one man’s account of how Giant’s Juan Marichal came to hit Dodger’s John Roseboro with his bat on August 22, 1965, at Candlestick Park.  (by the way, I have been to both Dodgers and Giants games, and I have been to both Dodger Stadium and Candlestick Park… so I wasn’t all that clueless!)  The play touched upon baseball history (which I was somewhat clueless about), racism in the 60’s, the Watt’s riot, black-on-black violence, and the narrator’s struggle with his own catholic upbringing and guilt he felt for his daughter as he goes through his own divorce.  Goodness gracious, there were a ton of issues that could be touched upon here… While there is a lot to be digested, this was my ONE take-away…

There were events that led to build up in tension between Juan and John.  There are reports of what happened, but no one knows for sure exactly what words were exchanged that led to Juan hitting John over the head with his bat.  Long story short, after years of bitterness, they eventually played together and made public appearances together.  In short, they became good friends…  I was curious so I googled (i know, the nerd in me) and read some conflicting reports on how close they became…  However few quoted Johnny Roseboro as having said:

“There were no hard feelings on my part, and I thought if that was made public, people would believe that this was really over with…  Hey, over the years you learn to forget things.”

Wow… I don’t know why but this left a huge impression on me… If someone had hit me with a bat that left a 2-inch gash that needed 14 stitches, it’d be hard to forget.  Yes, it did take years… but for him to come to a place where he can forget, and not allow that bitterness to continue… wow… and then Juan Marichal was quoted for having said the following at Johnny Roseboro’s funeral:

“forgiving me was one of the best things that happened in my life . . . When I became a Dodger player, John told all the Dodger fans to forget what happened that day. It takes special people to forgive.”

I think about this thing called “forgiveness.”  It’s an easy word to say, but a very hard thing to really do in your heart.  I think we’re all broken and hurt… and as humans, we retaliate and hurt back.  In the words of my friend Susan Lawrence, “HURT PEOPLE HURT PEOPLE.”  Ain’t that the truth!  But all the more, I find that forgetting is sometimes harder to do.  I struggle with forgiving certain people in my life… and that struggle comes from the fact that I can’t forget how they have hurt me.   I need to learn to forget things…

One of my favorite quote comes from my favorite TV show, Criminal Minds:   Scars remind us of where we’ve been, they don’t have to dictate where we’re going.  Juan and John’s relationship is a good example of how they’ve been able to let go of the hurt they had caused in the past and move on with life.

By the way, how random and crazy is it that of all things, I would be blogging about what I learned from sports… and baseball of all things… God’s sense of humor cracks me up!

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