The events around the attack on New York City and Washington DC on September 11, 2001 shocked the nation and the world. So many lives were lost or forever changed by the actions of those behind the horrible events. At the same time, heroes emerged amidst the tragedy to lessen the burden of others – in some cases avoiding further losses.
I remember hearing a radio program reflect back on the days before the 9/11 attack, specifically to the topic of their discussion on September 10, 2001. The topic of the radio program was “sudden wealth syndrome” and was focused on how the children of those benefitting from dot-com investment wealth were struggling with suddenly having an excessive amount of money or material possessions. Basically, these offspring had become rich overnight and didn’t know how to handle their new lifestyle.
When events like 9/11 happen, the end result is an effected population that grows stronger and begins to appreciate all the things that they took for granted. For those on the September 10th radio program, they had lost sight too of the things that truly matter – perhaps taking things for granted on a level few will likely understand.
On this day, Thanksgiving 2017, we typically take time to pause and reflect on the things in which we are thankful. While I have challenged myself to recognize my blessings as a daily routine, I thought I would spend my time reflecting on the many ways God has continued to bless our family.
2016 Drumstick Dash
Over the past year, I have provided periodic updates on my personal life. If you have been following along, you know about Nicole and I welcoming our new son on August 4, 2017. Phoenix (aka Finn) has been an amazing blessing for us and his entire journey provided the wonderful benefit of bringing Nicole and I closer together than I could have ever imagined.
I think back to Thanksgiving 2016 and how we didn’t even realize that Baby Finn was already a part of us. We decided to run in a local race called the Drumstick Dash. At the time, we were working out about four days a week – making 3 – 4 mile runs a part of our exercise routine as well.
In years prior, there was a short route for the Drumstick Dash, which was something like a mile or so. When we saw the turn, we thought that was the case – but were surprised to see so many make the turn for the very short route. We didn’t judge them though … it was Thanksgiving and they probably had things to do.
It wasn’t until we neared mile three and I realized we were not close to the finish line, that the turn most took was for the 5k route. We were obviously on the 10k route and that really short one mile route no longer existed. However, we were in great shape and had ran quite a bit the last few months – so both figured we were fine to finish the longer route.
Then Nicole slowed and wanted to walk.
Those who know Nicole will understand this is not like her. Not at all. She is the most competitive and driven person I know. She told me to keep running, but I opted to walk with her, enjoying our time together – as always.
We finished the route back at our normal pace and really didn’t think anything about it … until a few weeks later, when the pregnancy test revealed she was pregnant. Everything made sense for last year’s Drumstick Dash.
Telling that story always makes me smile – especially when I see our beautiful son’s smile.
Blessed Beyond Words
I truly feel like I am blessed more than I ever expected or can even describe with my family and amazing circle of friends. In the last year alone, there have been some amazing blessings in my life:
- Baby Finn entered our life on August 4, marking the end of an amazing journey that Nicole and I traveled together, only to begin a new journey with our newborn son as the focus.
- I was able to reconnect with friends and colleagues I worked with 14 years ago, changing jobs to work with an amazing group of professionals at CleanSlate Technology Group.
- For the first time in my son’s (Eric) 10-year football journey, I have been able to simply watch his games, instead of participating in some aspect of coaching. It has been an amazing experience to watch him play this season – with his final game being held at Lucas Oil stadium in two days to protect his team’s undefeated status and compete for the 2017 State Championship title. I could not be more proud of him as a competitive athlete, honor student, church volunteer and human being.
- I’ve watched my step-daughter (Sydney) continue to grow as a wonderful person, getting her driver’s license and starting her job at Dairy Queen, while continuing to care for her room full of exotic animals. She has continued to receive praise from her employer and her heart amazes me with the degree of caring and love she possesses.
- Last but not least, I am so thankful for Nicole. She is my rock, my inspiration, my true love, my everything! As I noted above, we have continued to grow closer every day and the pregnancy with baby Finn was filled with memories that will last forever in my heart. Nicole is truly the most amazing and giving person I have ever met in my life!
Like I suggested above, I have been focused on being grateful and reflecting on my blessings on a daily basis. I truly believe I am blessed beyond words with the wonderful path God has put before me and our amazing family.
On this Thanksgiving day, I wish you and yours only the very best and I truly appreciate your time in reading my thoughts.
Have a really great day!!!