The year was 1992. I was in fourth grade. And when you're in fourth grade, the highlight of your day is recess. On one particularly sunny afternoon, my classmates and I decided to play a round of kickball. Because I was a girl (and a stringbean of one) I was usually picked last or next to last. That day was no different, but for some odd reason, I was urged to be the team pitcher. I was petrified, for good reason. I might have gotten one or two rolls under my belt before Will Padilla stepped up to the plate. Let's just say this kid had a leg on him. I can still picture the deflated red ball flying directly towards my face. When ball met face, my little 65-pound-body flew backyards a few feet and landed with a thud on the pavement. It was not a pretty sight. I had no broken bones, but a broken spirit for sure. And with that, my pitching career ceased. Until last night! For the first time in my adult life, I'm a member of a matching-t-shirt-wearing sports team. I worked too much to join one in New York, but now I have time to play and it gets me out of the house while Andrew is studying. Last night was our first game, and we slaughtered the other team 10-3! And against my better judgement, I played two innings as the team pitcher. As I stepped up to the mound and gripped the red, slightly deflated ball for the first time, my stomach flip-flopped (seriously—I was nervous!). But with a little focus and some team support, I made it out alive. The photos below are horribly blurry (it's hard to snap photos mid-game) but they serve as proof. The lesson of this challenge? No matter how big or small your fear may be, it's healthy to face it...deflated red ball and all.