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At the Beginning of the Day, It’s All About What Puts a Smile on My Face


Every morning when I walk into my office I’m greeted by a photo of my wife clapping for my eldest daughter who is holding a “magic wand” and is sporting a tiara in celebration of her first birthday.

This is a perfect way to start my day, for more than a few reasons, but not only for the couple you might think…

My wife and I were going through some tough times back then.  Sadly, I didn’t see much of an issue but my wife was not happy.  That’s how we guys do sometimes, we have to be clubbed in the head with a problem before we can see the light.  Either that or everything goes dark for a minute or two.  Then, once we’ve woken up and shaken out the cobwebs, we get the inkling that something might be off.  It is what it is.

Anyway, that being said, most people would think it normal to shut the door, if you will, on that part of our lives… not so much on my daughter’s birthday, but on the time that my wife and I struggled.  This is not the case for me.

There is no doubt that my little girl’s first birthday was a big deal and watching her grow up to be a capable, intelligent young lady has been an obvious highlight in my life.  That’s certainly a great part of starting out another big day.  On the other hand, while it would be a little ridiculous to say I “celebrate” the challenges my wife and I went through, I definitely don’t have to shut the door on that time either.  See, remembering what we had to go through to get to where we are has a few benefits.

First, remembering the tough times serves as a reminder that I have no desire to go back to that.  Put simply, it keeps me honest.  Second, it puts today’s much smaller issues in perspective so they’re a little easier to handle right away (rather than the alternative of “sweeping them under the rug”).  Finally, it helps secure our future…  What got us into trouble isn’t rocket science and to repeat it would be fairly simple – unless I learn from my mistakes.

That’s me, don’t you know?  They say and intelligent person learns from his mistakes…  A wise person learns from the mistakes of others.  I’ve got about 40 years before I hit wise so I have to work on intelligent.  “Dance with the girl who brung ya”, so they also say.

In any event, it was nice to start my day with a smile this morning.

My eldest in her first middle school swim meet… She’s the one who touched the wall in that second photo.  And if you notice, she kicked not only until she touched the wall, but after.  That’s my GIRL!!!


  1. Sue Slaght says:

    I think it’s good to remember the struggles as it makes the better times all the sweeter.

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