I am thankful today. These two. My biggest fans.
This is not the name I gave them, but the name they gave themselves. Their real names are Mom and Dad, or Bob and Lorraine in the world outside my family. But I frequently receive a note signed ‘your biggest fans’.
I know I am blessed. I always felt fortunate, but didn’t really understand how important the support and belief and challenge is from parents in our lives. I assumed for most of my childhood that everyone had people like this in their house – people to cheer us on, people to celebrate our success. I know now that not everyone has these types of fans standing with them.
Don’t get me wrong. They didn’t cheer me on without having high expectations. When I needed a push to study harder, to think about my actions, and to bring my best self to the table, they were there for those moments also.
But they were always there as a fan when the moment mattered … when I got an interview, when I landed a job, and when I was promoted. They were there in personal moments too … when I got married, we bought a house, made important decisions about how to raise the kids, and when I achieved my black belt in martial arts. They discussed important decisions with me, they provided input, they let me make decisions and mistakes, and they celebrated the successes.
I recently gave a strategy presentation that was extremely important in my job. I discussed it with them. They both have backgrounds in technology jobs. They provided feedback, proof-read the presentation, and provided feedback on how to make it stronger. Just like real fans, they want me to be great.
They call, send notes, share photos, and brag every now and then. 😎
They inspire me with their zest for life. They are busy, involved in life, and yet always there for people who need them. One of their mottos is “we show up” and they do. They have extended family all over North America and they are often on the road. They’ve got it figured out from packing the car, hitting the road, finding new adventures, and being there for the good times and hard times in equal measures. People often say “we knew you’d come”.
They’ve taught me so much and been there for so many. And yet, at the end of the day no matter what else is going on I know they are there for me. Encouraging, smiling, and cheering. My biggest fans.