By Kelli Ridgway
Wife to Jeffrey Ridgway

There is always change in the game of baseball and each season brings a new adventure.  As a wife, you are often left to fend for yourself while the guys are on the road.  There is only so much shopping, surfing the internet and watching TV you can do.  It gets old being alone fairly quickly.  It is important to make friends with other wives.  I have been blessed to have been able to take this journey with some spectacular women.
In the early years of our now husbands playing, it was hard to establish friendships that would last.   There were so many girls that would come and go, you never knew who was going to be around when you came back for your next visit (I didn't live with Jeffrey for the season until we got married).  Jeffrey and I were married in November of 2005, so our first full season together began that spring.  We were sent to Montgomery, Alabama (Double A for the Tampa Bay [Devil] Rays).  This is truly where my relationships started to grow.  In Double A, there were more players engaged or married, which meant there were more girls living there for the season.  We sat together at the games and when the guys would go on the road we would get together. 

Jeffrey got called up to Triple A six weeks into the season.  We made the trip to Durham, North Carolina together (Thank goodness for off days).  We made the decision not to set up camp in North Carolina, with baseball being so unpredictable we didn't know how permanent his call up would be.  We stayed in a hotel during homestands, then I would venture the four hours back to our home in Summerville, South Carolina.  As I journeyed back and forth, I realized how much I missed having the other wives around.

Jeffrey was back in Durham for the 2007 season.  The team reserved apartments for the players to stay which made it easier for us wives to get together.  It was so nice having the support of each other just a walk away.  It also made it easier to get together for dinners, carpool together for road trips and even allowed us to start a Bible Study.

I think it is important to have the support of other wives in the game.  There aren't many people who know exactly what it is like to have our husbands gone six to eight months every year during their career.  The wives are sometimes forgotten about in the mix of things during the beginning of a season, so it is up to us to get to know one another.  It is also important for us to remember that we all were "The New Girl" at one point, so don't be shy.  We all know how hard it is to be where we are.  Also with that being said, established wives need to remember to be friendly and welcoming.  It isn't hard to spot a players wife, be sure to go up to them and welcome them to the team and ask them to sit with you.  

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