Tag Archives: commitment

HYPE

I try and avoid propaganda. But I love this. I’ve seen a wide range of posts over the past 24 hours. And I feel like even my rightest of right friends have acknowledged this point — we fought a war over this 70+ years ago. We became “America” on the heels of the sides we chose and the fights we fought and the enemy we squashed. (I’m happy to dig into all the nuance of WW2, mind you — I don’t view it romantically nor do I believe it played out romantically, but I certainly celebrate it as such). What I found most heartening today was the voices of people with whom I usually disagree on all things politically, stepping forward and saying … if The Daily Stormer is what invited you to Charlottesville, you had every right to be there … and we have every right to tell you to STFU, because you don’t represent anything American. Anything.

#iamgrateful and #iamthankful that I have seen all this up close. Sitting across from me and next to me at lunch while in high school. The fact that I was invited into friends houses where Nazi paraphernalia was on display, flags hung on ceilings … taught me that this isn’t what most and many of these people mean to believe. It’s people in search of belief and meaning. This whole weekend took me back 25 years. Humbled me. We don’t take steps forward. If you look at our footprints, we salsa dance forward and backward. Progressive spirals. The net sum of the past 25 years is progress. But if we were to look at any individual point in time over the course of that 25 years, you’d think twice about betting on what you were going to see — what part of the salsa dance you were going to snapshot. In the end, I hugged my kids like hell this weekend. Like hell. And I know that for all our progress, the same statement applies to my son and daughter … don’t give anyone a chance to question your value, your contribution, or your fortitude. You again? Yes. And again and again and again. Sorry for the ramble folks. I’m twisted. I’ve always wondered what I’d do if I had the chance to go back to high school and start over. This weekend, I made it back to high school. Just not the way I had hoped. Love you all. And I hope every person on this planet finds meaning that doesn’t require zero summing someone else’s value in return. Life ain’t linear. But it can be progressive. Make your commitment to be incremental. In the best way. Be incremental.

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TMLFYI… | On the Move

I enjoy our weekends. On most weekend days I get to wake up with you in the morning, give your Mom the opportunity to sleep in a little, and get some dedicated time alone with you. Any time alone with you is a win for me.

We do a little bit of talking. We do a little bit of exercising. We do a little bit of playing. We do a little bit of going outside. (Note: You love dogs. When I walk you around either in Jersey City or Edison, we’re bound to see dogs walking their owners early in the morning, and you reach for them, play with them, completely unfazed, and completely engrossed.) We do a little bit of a lot. And I love every second.

This past Saturday morning you were obsessed with a video of you on Daddy’s phone. So I had a good time balancing getting you some exercise with basically, having you chase yourself in Selfie mode. You were a monster. And it’s all documented.

I love your energy. I love your conviction. I love your resilience. This is everything we’ve known about you from the day you were born, encapsulated in a single video. It’s more than your pursuit of something, it’s your happiness and commitment to that pursuit throughout. Unwavering.

I am willing to wager that over time, we’ll see more and more efforts like this from you. And it’s our job to make sure you maintain that energy to pursue, and find a way to remain happy while you do.

Challenge accepted, my love. Challenge accepted.

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TMLFYI… | Dogged

Dogged is a word I don’t use nearly enough. To describe me. To describe the people I’m with or around. To describe anyone. I haven’t formally reserved the word for very committed uses but I think the nature of the word itself makes it so.

I can say that I’ve been socialized to say something like “dogged pursuit”, treating the word dogged more as the kickoff to a compound word. What and where have I seen dogged? Embodied? No place better than this.

Maybe one better place. Maybe one more powerful place. Maybe one place I need to tell you about now, and will take so much time to tell you about in the future. You are dogged. In your pursuit of everything. And I love it. It’s inspiring. And it’s a reminder.

Your great grandmother, your Ba, was similar. A week ago we celebrated what would have been her 100th birthday (albeit a little early, but that’s not the point.) You have a connection to your Ba. In so many ways it’s uncanny. In my head I still think you have a third middle name — Bhanu, or “Ba + Nu” or, “of Ba.” It’s my own play on words.

You see, your Ba was an extraordinary spirit. She lived a fuller life through age 40 than most live ever. So when she, tragically, lost her ability to walk in the latter quarter of her life, she embraced her challenge and role in life with grace. At least that’s what I saw, as a grandson. And I allow myself a little bit of time to reflect on her experience as an adult but stop myself at the risk of going down a near infinite number of rabbit holes that would call so many things into question.

What I remember, with strength and conviction, is how she lived for most of the time I knew her. How she fought her way to subsist. When people watch this video, they’ll be hopeful and optimistic and even congratulatory about what your future holds. When you’re able to move your hands in front of you. When you’re able to get traction and crawl. When your push ups lead you to stand up, and not just to a standstill. Just about everyone who looks at this video is going to smile wide at your effort. That’s the benefit of youth, my love.

When I look at this video, know that my mind will live in two very different places. I’ll always find happiness in your every effort. Every effort. I promise you. But there’s a strong part of me that will watch this video and think of your Ba. And how she faced similar challenges often without hope. A more painful way to live. On the other side of the bell curve. Where knowledge isn’t about seeking what is next and pushing your body forward, but where knowledge is a painful reflection of what was and what could have been.

And where, like your Ba, with all of that history, pain, and legacy hung around your shoulders, having broken your legs and shattered your ability to even walk — you still fight, and crawl, and scramble, and make do.

Today, my love, you were dogged. In you, I saw a reflection of your Ba. There are few greater compliments you will receive.

Today my love for you is dogged. In honor and appreciation.

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