The Art of Fielding

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Last week I finished the novel titled The Art of Fielding. It’s quite a long book and was somewhat hard to get into at the beginning, but by the time I hit my stride around page 300 I couldn’t stop myself from devouring the rest. The story speaks from the point of view of a handful of different characters so you’re getting insight into each of their thoughts. The baseline of the story always falls back to baseball (baseline, baseball, pun fully intended). I love baseball. I grew up with baseball and softball and it’s a language I’m quite fluent in. One of the main characters is a shortstop who struggles with the pressure of major league scouts and ultimately, failing in what he believes is his only life path. I kept seeing a lot of my younger self in the character which first terrified me, but then helped me come to terms with my past and see it in a new light.

But what really got me going around page 300 of the novel was the theme of speaking your truth – letting your words fly. If you’re not going to speak your truth, no one else is going to either. So either you do it, or you don’t, it’s as simple as that.

I’ve come to learn that there is a time and place to let certain words fly vocally. It’s an artform in itself to be able to read and play off of other people’s body language, but when you’re by yourself and just letting thoughts run through your head and writing them down, you can cut loose and let anything go. That’s why I love writing. I can say whatever I want, whenever I want and no one’s telling me what to do. Because they are my words, and they are my truth.

That’s another thing I’m going to work on this year – speaking my truth and being more confident about it.

Here is one of my favorite quotes from The Art of Fielding – let it fly.

“What would he say to her, if he was going to speak truly? He didn’t know. Talking was like throwing a baseball. You couldn’t plan it out beforehand. You just had to let go and see what happened. You had to throw out words without knowing whether anyone woud catch them — you had to throw out words you knew no one would catch. You had to send your words out where they weren’t yours anymore. It felt better to talk with a ball in your hand, it felt better to let the ball do the talking. But the world, the nonbaseball world, the world of love and sex and jobs and friends, was made of words.”

The Art of Fielding

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