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MLB Sis & Founder of Sisters In Sports, Karen Moyer, was recently asked to write a blog for the women’s brand GRACED BY GRIT. The topic was, of course, “GRIT”! Karen shared how grit has carried her through life, and we know Sisters can relate!
I have been blessed with strong genes and tenacious character from my parents and the positive influence of a village of others, yet grit has helped me have the tenacity for my life journey that is ultimately God’s plan anyway! As the daughter of a famous college basketball coach, wife of a very long-time MLB pitcher, and loving mother of 8 kids (2 adopted from Guatemala), my grit has shown through strong determination and the ability to always find amicable resolutions. Even if things appeared easy, the truth is that it was much harder than I let show most of the time!
I was the first girl to play little league baseball, and playing with all boys made me appreciate the grit it takes when one has the confidence to do something extreme. Having athletic skills helped me from being totally made fun of, but boys were ruthless. They made me feel pressured at every bat, and in the field, however I had the courage needed to be the first girl to play because was I was supported by my parents and brother, who’s team I played on!
In high school I decided to work in television sports. This was the 1980s when no woman was doing such a thing! The grit and backbone I needed to stay focused in a “man’s world” was imperative to have any success.
While my TV dream had to be put on hold (basically for life) because I married “least likely to succeed” in MLB, the pitcher who holds the record as the oldest to win at 49 years old, philanthropy became my passion and we founded The Moyer Foundation! I founded and created two camps for kids: Camp Erin, a grief camp for kids who grieve a loss, and Camp Mariposa, a camp for kids who live with family addiction. It takes a lot of grit and perseverance to fight the fight for kids in distress, and to constantly fundraise takes patience to grind for the cause.
As an MLB spouse, I never knew what I was “signing up” for… I moved 84 times (YES! 84!) and not one of them did I choose. It was his dream, not mine, but I knew the grit it would take to support him and keep our family foundation together, no matter what. Being a coach’s daughter and understanding sports helped, but recognizing that I could never be #1 in order for him to be most successful was the greatest lesson I learned right away. My grit was to be selfless and make everything off-the-field happen for our family!
Parenting and marriage take unconditional grit through EVERY up and down, through good times and bad, and through those times when only LOVE is the answer, when it’s so hard! My energy and endurance come from recognizing life as a gift. Being brave in every role comes from many lessons learned in a life full of imperfections.
At 50 years old, I’m thankful for my blessings, passions, strengths, and the intense grit that gotten me through all of my Plan B’s because nothing is guaranteed. I don’t get overwhelmed because I live only in the now! I believe in second chances and forgiveness as the golden ticket to living on and living well. And, most important, know early on to surround oneself with people that help you not only shine on but shine brighter. People that make you the best version of yourself are worth having around forever! My grit is solely based on God’s plan for me, and every day I am making today ridiculously amazing!