By Carla Liberty
Life. A process. Ever-changing. Like a baseball game, it throws us curve balls and change-ups, sliders, and yes, sometimes heat. Like the 95 mph fastball kind of heat. When we’re at bat, we have to make split decisions as to whether to swing (tackle our problems head-on) or whether to take the pitch (give the moment more thought and hope we’re on the right course). When the pitcher releases that ball, we have to be quick on our feet and adapt to what is thrown our way. (Life’s many challenges). Should I swing at that fastball? Is it in my strike (comfort) zone? Or is it outside the batter’s box (out of my control)?
The Divineys’ baseball game has gone into extra innings. In fact, they’ve been in extra innings since that horrible November night nearly two years ago. They faced a huge curveball when Ryan was attacked. Life as they knew it became life, we’re plugging through it. Faced with umpteen change-ups hurled by a steady stream of starters and relievers, they wait with anticipation for the day of Ryan’s game-winning home run (complete/total healing of body/mind). But until that day, they see the innings change (seasons), giving way to a new set of pitches (issues/challenges/and yes…progress).
We know that since the attack, Ken Diviney has stayed home with his son to provide 24/7 care. He is constantly at home plate anticipating what pitch will be thrown next. Will it be a Stephen Strasburg-style fastball that flies across the plate (smooth sailing, status quo) or will it be another curveball (infections/complications) or slider (setback)?
If there is anything good that has come from this nightmare, it is Ryan’s team – Team Diviney. The infielders (doctors/family/friends/community) and the outfielders (out of town support, media, etc.) are all on board to help this family win the game. We’ll be here when you need relief pitchers, we’ll be here when there are rain delays, and yes, we’ll be here when Ryan hits that game-winning home run.
Until such time, we must take note of the unsurpassed level of commitment the Team Manager (Ken Diviney) has to keeping his son physically healthy for that day when his mind is in sync with his body. Ken has said before that choices are easy to make when there is no choice. He is doing right by his son, providing him with a level of care most people cannot begin to fathom. He is in it to win it. And he will stand by his son because he, like Ryan, his lovely wife Sue, and precious daughter Kari – is made of “the right stuff.”
Ironically, as I was writing this piece, I heard the song “Love Without End, Amen” by Randy Travis. The words strike a chord and I liken the chorus to Ken’s undying devotion to his only son:
“Let me tell you a secret about a father’s love.
A secret that my daddy said was just between us.
You see Daddy’s don’t just love their children every now and then.
It’s a love without end, Amen.”
Carla, this is amazing, it is perfect. I’m too moved to even cry — I have to just sit here and think about everything you said — especially about Ken, and how much I (all of us) admire him — and also, how much we respect and love the whole Diviney family. I hope no one comes over/calls me for the next half an hour (at least). I need some time to breathe and get my head straight.
Ken, we’ll never leave you and your family.
Love, hugs, prayers, always, Paula
Carla, that was a beautiful piece. You hit a home run.
Beautiful piece, Carla. You too are a gifted writer. What a wonderful expression of love to the Diviney family….
Excellent analogy, Carla. Reminds me of Forrest Gump when he said, “My momma always said life was like a box of chocolates. You never know what you’re gonna get.” I like the prayer that says, “God, nothing’s going to happen today that you and me can’t handle.” Think it–pray it–live it!
Carla Liberty says
Thank you everyone for the lovely comments. I think our girl Rita has coined a new one….FTW! (For the win!).
Love/blessings to the Diviney family.
Gail Doyle says
Carla, That was beautiful ..I can’t say any more .Your writing is amazing . Many gifted people down that way And all of what you wrote is so true for Ryan and family love ya Gail
You never cease to amaze me, Carla! I’m honored to be your friend!!
sally ellis says
Great job and I agree with Anna. The words on this post will inspire and be comforting to other individuals who find themselves in this unfortunate situation. Still here.
Sue Haviland says
KERI DEZELL says
Wow… perfectly said Carla. Thank you.
Even amid the obvious heartache, there’s ALWAYS a very touching and beautiful energy moving within and around Ryan and his family. This is just one more example of that. It’s purely magical- I’m so grateful to be part of such.
May the feelings we hold deep within our hearts reach Ryan and his family, helping to propel them forward to a place of complete healing.
With love and in prayer,
Keri, My Frankie and Family
Ann H Tearle says
Yours is beautifully written as well, Keri:)
Great post Carla! This post would make a great intro to the book Ken will write.
Family friend says
Yes indeed Anna, yet another gifted writer!
More later, Ken and Carla, but just so you know, this outfielder caught a fly ball, and I’m working my way toward home base. Batter up!
Beautifully put, Carla. Team Diviney FTW!
I’m in the stands cheering on for the ultimate Home Run. Nice post Carla.
Grey Hubler says
Helen M. Causin says