Two stories from two of my favorite speakers have been in my head over the last few days and I wanted to share these with you today. The first is from my favorite spiritual guru Terry Hershey. The story goes something like this (loosely paraphrased):
A businessman is on his way home following a lengthy trip. While on these trips he has several traditions. For himself he reads self-help books on how to hone his craft and ferociously jots notes down while in flight and during downtime. It has also become somewhat of a tradition that he buys a keepsake for his six year-old daughter. Deep down the man wants his daughter to know that he was thinking of her on his trip. This time the gift is a T-shirt with a cartoon picture of an armadillo. Rushing home and up the driveway the man walks through the door, embraces his wife and is told their daughter is waiting for him upstairs in her bedroom as bedtime has come and gone. The man rushes up the stairs and slowly enters his daughter’s bedroom with gift in hand. As he enters the room, before he can say a word, his daughter says, “Mom let us wait up!” as both the daughter and her teddy bear have their eyes fixated on her father. “We made space, come sit here with us.” As the man sits down he lifts the bagged present onto the bed, but again, before he can say a word his daughter says, “Tonight, teddy and I don’t need anything. We just want you to sit here with us and tell us a story. All we want, is one good story.” The man hugged his daughter and kissed her on the head. He was quiet for a good deal of time enjoying the warmth of his daughter as she leaned against his chest.
He forgot about the books he read on the plane.
He forgot about the notes he made.
He forgot about the goals reached on the business trip.
And he knew this moment matters.
This moment. This sacred moment.
The other story comes from Jon Acuff. It talks about Jon helping his daughter transition from training wheels to a two wheel bike. After several weeks of effort the daughter finally takes off on her own, albeit wobbly down a straight path. Ten feet, then twenty, now thirty feet she pedals on her own. Jon is so proud of her and in this moment is in full embrace of the moment having helped his daughter, giving himself a ton of attaboys and feeling like he’s got this parenting thing down. He is smiling and is just about as happy as his daughter is, when he hears her shout with unbelievable glee. “Daddy, daddy, I’m doing it! I’m doing it! I don’t need you anymore! I’m doing it!”
That line just about crushed me. “I don’t need you anymore.” Even now it brings tears to my eyes just thinking about it. I guess I’m in a state of mind where I want to be more intentional about enjoying and embracing moments. I mean, life moves really fast. I am a few years away from turning 30 and in the last few years have just started to understand what it means to enjoy the here and now. As life moves forward I want to look back on it knowing that I fully embraced and loved exactly where I was, with my loved ones every step of the way.