Day 5: A picture of your favorite memory
I've been a very, very lucky man. I married a fantastic woman, we have a beautiful daughter and in our eleven years together have created a lifetime of memories. From European travel to Ingrid's birth to falling asleep holding hands on the beach, there have been a number of experiences upon which I look back fondly.
One, however, was a completely innocuous comment by a random individual that has had a profound impact upon my life.
Michelle and I had been dating only a relatively short time when, in the Fall of 1999, we joined my parents for a long weekend at Breezy Point Resort in Pequot Lakes, MN. We decided to go for a walk around the downtown area, holding hands and talking on a beautiful, crisp Fall day. Turning our way down one of the shop-lined streets of an American small town whose economy is driven by tourism dollars, we hear footsteps approaching from behind and we slide over to allow them to pass. A young teenaged girl walks by us at a relatively brisk pace and as she passes says "you two are the cutest couple ever, just thought you should know." Flummoxed and without words I look at Michelle and we stifle a giggle and thank her as smiles take over our faces.
Now, I'm never one to fish for complements, and was a bit confused as to this young girl's motives, but decided to take it for what it was, a random act of kindness that made our day. Did it validate my choice of a life partner? Not exactly, but it made me feel great that others could see how I felt about Michelle and one thing that always stuck with me was how my parents interacted as I was growing up. I was lucky in that my parents loved each other and us. It was clearly visible in how they behaved. I wanted to make sure that any children Michelle and I had knew exactly how we felt about each other and about them. I wanted to set an example for how adult relationships are supposed to work. I also wanted them to "pay it forward" with random acts of kindness.
Maybe some day Ingrid will make another newly in love couple's day by telling them how cute they are together.