This past Sunday was Father’s Day. I spent the weekend with my wife, kids and grandkids celebrating the holiday together. It was a memorable couple of days and I even got presents. I couldn’t have asked for more or better.
Not surprisingly, the holiday gets me to thinking about my own dad (that’s what you’re supposed to do on Father’s Day). He passed away many years ago, but the memories live on. I learned some good and lasting lessons from my father. When I was very young he used to make me call relatives and thank them for any gift they gave me. I always felt very awkward having to call relatives and family friends anytime they gave me something (particularly things that seemed small and inconsequential). But it was great practice and well worth learning.
In the 2000 film The Family Man, Nicolas Cage plays a man who gets to see what would have happened as a family man and father for his kids had he made a different choice 13 years earlier. In the movie, Cage plays Jack Campbell, a wealthy, successful, and single investment banker. In his “glimpse” into what could have been Jack wakes up one Christmas morning in a suburban house with a wife and two kids. His wife is the woman he left 13 years earlier to pursue his career instead of settling down and getting married.
As he begins to succeed in this new life, falling in love with his wife, bonding with his children and working hard at his job his dream ends and he’s jolted back to his wealthy former life on Christmas Day. Fortunately for Jack the ending does suggest the possibility of a future as the father that he was beginning to like being. The very life I have and thoroughly enjoy.
Being a father has taught me not take anything for granted. Sunday evening I called my kids when they got home and told them how much I appreciated them for a great weekend (I thank my father for this training). If you didn’t think about it, it’s never too late to say your own thank you. In the words of William Arthur Ward, “Feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it.”
William “Bud” Hart is a certified “Mindset” Coach, Accountability Partner and Business Consultant. Founder of Hart Group, www.hartgroupma.com.