Opinion: Braves’ win a welcome step toward normalcy

Braves player Jorge Soler celebrates during the Braves' victory parade in Cobb County, Georgia on November 5th, 2021.

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Braves player Jorge Soler celebrates during the Braves' victory parade in Cobb County, Georgia on November 5th, 2021.

At Friday’s boisterous celebration parade, all of the kids enjoying this day didn’t have to think about, and be reminded of, all the aspects of their lives that had suddenly became so different.

The Atlanta Braves are the World Series Champions!

That’s especially exciting as it followed a season full of challenges, and concluded with a triumphant, and decisive, World Series victory! A lot has been written about this wonderful season for our Braves, and what this means to Atlanta and the whole metro area.

I want to emphasize the significance of this step forward – in both our city, and in our world (no fans last year!) -- where we have all lived with an underlining of fear and doom for 20 months now.

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Cathy Lussiana, AJC community contributor. Contributed photo

Credit: contributed

Cathy Lussiana, AJC community contributor. Contributed photo

Credit: contributed

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Cathy Lussiana, AJC community contributor. Contributed photo

Credit: contributed

Credit: contributed

And now we are the city with a winning Major League Baseball team. We’re hosting a championship and just hosted a parade celebration.

These are the kinds of things that were always a part of “normal” life!

Thanks to the coverage of this event by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, two of the kids who were interviewed and featured, while parade-ready and waiting along the street, were twin grandchildren of mine. Their planning included poster creation (one grandchild’s poster noted that both she and Ozzie played second base!), and there was unrestrained enjoyment in their preparation for this day. Getting up for school? Not always easy. Getting up for dad to take us to the city for a Braves parade? No problem!

During their discussion with the reporter, their complete honesty was without hesitation; when asked, “Did you have school off today?,” the answer was an immediate “Nope, we played hooky”. (One day I may need to coach my grandson on being a bit more careful when answering a reporter’s questions. Or, maybe this article is the printed excuse for Monday morning!) In full disclosure, their teacher had (very appropriately) asked the class on Thursday afternoon who would not be there on Friday -- and went ahead and assigned Friday’s work for weekend completion.

At a boisterous celebration parade, all of the kids enjoying this day didn’t have to think about, and be reminded of, all the aspects of their lives that had suddenly became so different. The changes began (it seems so long ago) with an abrupt transition to “virtual” school and continued with all the variations that have impacted their school life, after-school sports and time with friends.

A thank you and loud shout-out to the Braves organization, the players who brought home the victory and the AJC, for ensuring my grandkids (in addition to everyone else there, and the rest of the geographical area) had a very special memory of an incredible day. A day of fun and celebration; a day to play hooky; a day of escape from talk about the virus that had suddenly overcome and forever changed their young lives. Even their great-grandpa (RIP), a big proponent of the importance of education, and also a big baseball fan, would have embraced this day of hooky and a special experience for them!

What a wonderful day to be a kid hanging out in the city, watching a parade and celebrating and cheering with the crowd!

Cathy Lussiana is a community contributor for The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. A retired HR professional, Lussiana enjoys both Atlanta and southwest Colorado, and spending her time biking, traveling, writing and with her grandchildren.

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Olivia Rose, Channing Pittman, 10, and Cooper Rose, 11, with their homemade signs cheering on the Atlanta Braves Friday. Olivia and Cooper are grandchildren of AJC community contributor Cathy Lussiana.

Olivia Rose, Channing Pittman, 10, and Cooper Rose, 11, with their homemade signs cheering on the Atlanta Braves Friday. Olivia and Cooper are grandchildren of AJC community contributor Cathy Lussiana.

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Olivia Rose, Channing Pittman, 10, and Cooper Rose, 11, with their homemade signs cheering on the Atlanta Braves Friday. Olivia and Cooper are grandchildren of AJC community contributor Cathy Lussiana.