As I’ve done many times in the past, I’ve decided to give 2014 a quick once over and reflect on some of the events that took place this past year that stood out to me. While this list is in no way exhaustive nor is it a complete recap of 2014, all of the things that caught my eye significantly impacted me in some way.
- I became the parent of an adult child – Sarah turned 18 this year. I still contend that this is not even a remote possibility since she was just born like three years ago. Regardless, I was in no way ready to admit that I was old enough to be the parent of an adult child. I still believe that I am not that old. But I suppose you can’t argue with time.
- My second kid tested out of school early – Rebekah decided she was done with school and took the CHSPE. By passing the exam she was able to forgo the second half of her senior year and will instead be enrolling in junior college come January 2015. To say that this kid is driven is to not even come close to describing her.
- I established new friendships and strengthened old ones – In both my personal and my professional life I’ve been able to establish new relationships. Professionally, this year saw a number of my closest working relationships change because of job changes. That doesn’t necessarily mean it has been a negative thing. In fact, I am very happy for my former coworkers since they are now fulfilled in their careers. Personally, I’ve had the fortune to become much closer to some of my friends that, before this year, I was not as close to. Situations have changed, priorities have shifted and the stars aligned to allow me to develop some very close friendships this year. For that I will be forever grateful.
- Dr. Seuss overtook my family – All five of my children were involved in Stage 1 Youth Theater’s summer production of Seussical. Sarah was the audition and rehearsal pianist, Rebekah was the stage manager (first time managing the stage!!!), Adriannah was the Cat in the Hat, Alaynah was Mrs. Mayor and Aaron was Mr. Mayor. This presentation single handedly took over my summer but it was so worth it to see all of my kids participate in a show together.
- I became president of a baseball league – Aaron has played baseball the last two years as part of Centerville National Little League. This past year I was elected as President of the Board of Directors for the league. Not sure what I was thinking exactly by taking this position on, but for now it is a blast since I have an excellent supporting cast of amazing board members.
- AJ became a football player, I became a coach – AJ decided he wanted to play football this year so we signed him up for Fremont Football. If that wasn’t enough of a committment, I decided to assist the team this year by coaching as well and by the beginning of the season I was the offensive coordinator. To say that I was overextended would be an understatement, but I enjoyed every minute of it and I believe Aaron did, too. He was the smallest player in our division (he was minimum league age for the division… by 32 days) so this year was more of a learning year for him. But by the end of the season I can honestly say that he developed his own player character and is setting himself up for some amazing things in future seasons. And if nothing else he will forever have this chip on his shoulder that should do well in protecting him for the rest of his life.
- Racial tension became a nationally prominent thing again – The Michael Brown case happened this year. The Eric Garner case happened this year. The media happened this year and things got wildly out of control, to the point that people were protesting around the country, closing freeways, staging die-ins and ultimately targeting and murdering police officers. In my opinion the actions of the protestors were ridiculous and completely counterproductive to bringing positive attention to their cause. Regardless, many people jumped on the #HandsUpDontShoot and #ICantBreath bandwagons and still many others jumped on the loud protest bandwagon. The racial divide in this country was already pretty bad, but at the end of 2014 they are much worse, in my opinion.
So that’s a brief look back on 2014 for me. Like I said, there were A LOT of other things that came to pass this past year. Some that, when I look back on them, I cannot help but smile and others that, when I look back on them, I can’t help but feel sadness. Either way, what happened, happened, and I pray that I am a better man because of it. Likewise, I pray that your 2014 wasn’t something to be bitter over but was instead something to want to be better in spite of. And I also pray that your 2015 is bountiful, fruitful, abundant and positive.
I tip my glass you. Here’s to an amazing 2015.