We joke at my house, as I’m sure some other families do, about our children taking care of us when they are grown and rich and famous, and when we are old and poor and feeble. All we want, we say, is a place at the beach, and good books to read.
Grant Desme probably will never be able to afford to buy his parents a beach house. He almost certainly could have. But that changed, stunningly, last week.
Desme, 23, announced Friday that he is changing careers and, thus, abandoning any realistic shot at being a millionaire. A rising minor league baseball star whose stellar season last year might have earned him a chance to play in the big leagues as early as this year, Desme is entering the priesthood.
As I read the story of Desme, a Californian and the most valuable player of the Arizona Fall League, I imagined what his parents thought. I wondered if Desme had told them he hoped to buy them a beach house some day.
But then I thought about it.
There is no doubt, I concluded, that Desme’s parents feel like a million dollars (even though they may never have that much money – especially now).
Desme could have a change of heart. But now he is at peace with himself, which wasn’t the case when he was blistering baseballs and base paths.
A happy heart. Isn’t that every parent’s wish for their children?
My kids know I joke a lot – probably too much. But when we get together tonight, I need to be serious for a moment; I need to set the record straight.
I need to tell them about Grant Desme.
It needs to be perfectly clear, if it isn’t already, that I want my children to pursue their dreams, and to strive to make the world a better place, no matter the financial dividends or lack thereof.
It needs to be perfectly clear, if it wasn’t already, that we are truly joking about the beach house.
And as cool as it would be to have a baseball card with my last name on it, it needs to be perfectly clear that I would like it if my kids grow up to be just like Grant Desme.
By Kevin Hogencamp