Here's a throwback originally written in 2012 as we were planning on heading to our 6th spring training as a married couple, and Elliot's 10th spring training. It's hard to believe we've been at it this long. I remember being asked by another girl that year if I had any advice as a "veteran" baseball wife for new wives. I remember being baffled by the fact that she thought I was a veteran. I still feel so new at this, like I'm learning more about this lifestyle every day.
Here's a little throwback of Elliot and I circa 2007.
This was taken the first week after we arrived in Durham, NC for the season.
Written by Nicole Johnson, Wife to Elliot Johnson
I can't believe we're already almost to spring training again. It seems that each year, the offseason flies by faster than it did the year before. All over Facebook, by fellow baseball wives are discussing where they will be living during spring training and where they think they will be playing this year. The stress is mounting as last-minute signings and trades are happening, and we're all thinking about either packing up our own lives, or packing up the life of the man we love.
But we're excited too. With spring there is a new feel in the air. With a new spring training comes hope for the year to come, and the chance for our men to get to go out there and show off what they've got. They've been working hard all winter to prepare for this, they are healthy, and they are ready.
This year marks my 6th spring training married to Elliot. My first year was his first invite to big league spring training, and I had absolutely no clue what that meant. All I knew was that I was going with my new husband to Florida from Arizona.
We couldn't afford to keep our rental in Arizona and go to spring training, and then rent during the season in Durham, NC, so we packed up everything we had and sent it in a pod to Durham. Let me just point out, right now, what faith we had in the idea that we were going to Durham. As I have spent some time in baseball now, I realize that nothing is guaranteed, and we were crazy to just send our stuff ahead of us. Crazy and lucky, because that is where we ended up.
So, in February of 2007, Elliot and I packed up our entire apartment, slept on an air mattress for a few days, and hopped into his (packed to the ceiling) Dodge Durango to make a trek across the US to Florida. Oh, and we towed my Chevy Cavalier behind us. I don't recommend towing your own car. Ever. I'll tell you why.
As we drove along on the freeway through New Mexico, we hit a bump.... well, more like the pavement dropped off several inches. It's enough that if you were driving your car (not towing another car behind), you'd probably have to pull over and get yourself together. So here we are, driving, drop like 6 inches, and so does my car behind us. BOOM BOOM! "What was that?!?!" Cue my car alarm. Yep, flying down the freeway, towing my car, and my car alarm is going off, and I have no clue where my keys are. I finally find them, we turn off the alarm, we pull off to the side to make sure my car is attached to the trailer we're towing it on. Whew.
We continue on our 3 day trip, and sometime during day 2 (also day 2 in Texas, that state really is big), we head through San Antonio. In rush hour. In construction. So here we are going like 15 over to stay with traffic, barriers on both sides (HAULING A CAR ON A TRAILER!) semi trucks passing us on the left. Oh, and suddenly, the lane shifts. There is a wall a few hundred feet in front of us. Pretty sure we both saw our lives flash before our eyes at that point.
Somehow, the good Lord got us through this drive. We have yet to ever make the drive across the country like that again (I'm good with never doing that again). I have a lot of respect for you families that do that drive (or even further) every year. Good luck in your travels, my baseball friends. Hoping your trip is less eventful than ours, and we look forward to seeing you soon.