Every fall my children and I engaged in an annual tradition. Just before Halloween, we carved our jack o’ lantern together. For twenty years it had always been the same. But, it was also much more.
August may be my favorite month. For many young athletes, it is a time of new beginnings. Football and other fall sports renew practice in a big way.
Now I can be part of the conversation, too. I know Nemo. I know about his lucky fin. I know Marlin, Dory, Gill and Crush [Dude!] I know about the adventure. I know about the relationship between the father and the son. I understand how they all fit into our world. Now I can take the next step and go Find Dory without feeling lost. I have “caught up”.
I sat only a few hundred yards from the dorm room where I had left my daughter as a freshman. Just four years ago, she had taken the biggest step of her life to that point.
When the time to go came, she gave me a kiss, squeezed my hand and told me “I will be here when you come out”. These were the truest words I have ever heard.
One evening, instead of retiring after the news, as he usually did, my dad hung around and watched the entire movie with me. The selection that night was entitled Spencer’s Mountain* starring Henry Fonda.