(I wrote this a long tim ago, and forgot to post it.)
Lately I have discovered that I am driven by a close group of people in my life. The important ones. The ones I love to be around because not only do I enjoy their company but I learn more when I am with them. These people help me gain perspective on my own life, help me understand the reality of my goals and my hopes to reach them.
Growing up you are sometimes asked who your "Hero" is. Who do you look up to, or want to be like. I remember hearing alot of "my dad" or "my mom" or religious figures or sports athletes, and I would usually follow the crowd with a typical answer. To this day, I am not sure if I could target one person as my idle or hero. But I do consider certain people a crucial part of my everyday growth. Here I am, 28, and I still look to others for knowledge, advice, hope or inspiration.
My dad certainly is my go-to person for knowledge. He has many tidbits that are both useful, and some not useful at all. He taught me how to say "humuhumunukunukuapuaa" the state fish of Hawaii. He also taught me how to change a tire, which has come in handy more that once in my lifetime. He was always a supporter and never hindered me on anything I was interested in growing up. We were never forced into anything, like flute lessons, or ballet. Our interests were encouraged in creative ways. I remember my dad would never ask us to stop playing the piano. Even if it were late a night, or while he was taking a nap. He never wanted to have to ask his child to stop playing the piano. I respected that greatly.
My mom is one of my most favorite people. She makes herself available to me at any time I need to talk, vent, ask, learn or just be with. I have never come across a more loving and selfless person. It is incredible the amount of sacrifice this woman has made, for so many people in her life. I can only hope that I am as good of a mother. Each time Jack wakes up with a scary dream, or can't sleep, I sit and rub his back or stroke his forehead and think about how safe I felt when my mother would do the same for me. There is something about her that makes her my best friend, and my mother, simultaneously.
If you were to ask me what I love most about Josh, I would right away tell you his smile. But behind his prettiness- Josh has the biggest heart you will ever come across. Truly, it is Josh's passion for life and family that makes me fall in love with him everyday. I hope to have the same outlook on life that he does, seeing each day as an opportunity, taking advantage of chances he has to learn new things and become better. I admire him so much for his diligence, honesty, and hard work. He is perfect example of a dedicated husband and father. The things he does for our family is enough to call him a hero.
And this one. Is there any question to why I am so inspired. I can't even imagine what it was like for Jack, as an infant, toddler, and little boy, to endure three open-heart surgeries and have the spirit and strength to come out of each one with a better attitude? I hope that he knows how much he has taught me. I hope to repay the favor.
I am so lucky to have these people around me. I am so lucky to have a sister that is so smart, and witty, and intelligent that she is a delight to be around. And a brother, who has a wonderful family with so much love, who is a wonderful example to me. I don't express my gratitude enough for these people that help me make it through each day and help me to be a better human being, simply by being who they are.
The family is both the fundamental unit of society as well as the root of culture. It ... is a perpetual source of encouragement, advocacy, assurance, and emotional refueling that empowers a child to venture with confidence into the greater world and to become all that he can be. -----MARIANNE E. NEIFERT