Red Letter Days

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There are some days I will always remember. Always. The day I got married, for instance. The magical days when my three children were born. The day I ran the Boston Marathon.

These were days I had prepared for, worked towards for months, and anticipated with a heady mixture of excitement, fear and joy.

Other memorable days have arrived without preparation or warning, like unexpected presents. I have delighted in several of these surprising days recently, gifted to me by my children.

Are they Red Letter Days? Is that really what I should call them? I’m told the term ‘Red Letter Day’ originated in early Medieval times, when it was decreed that saint’s days and other holy occasions be marked on the church calendar in red ink.

Well, my recent Red Letter Days have little or nothing to do with either calendars or the church. But however I categorize them, they have been absolutely wonderful. So perhaps I should record them in red ink on my calendar after all.

For instance, this past weekend The Eldest called, his voice vibrant with pleasure and enthusiasm, to share the tale of his week of triumphs. A corporate invitation to watch the Patriots play the Ravens in Gillette Stadium. (And sadly, yes, private teeth gnashing for The Girl, who is a massive New England fan…) A meat and martini-fueled dinner and evening out with brokers – his opposite numbers across the increasingly successful trades he makes. A long-awaited annual review, filled with praise. And a promotion. And a raise. And a probable bonus.

I really could not be much happier if all these things had happened to me.

It was such a pleasure just to listen. I am a big believer in the power of listening, and the power of praise. I did have some advice for him as well. It is advice I give myself. I told him to take a moment, now.  I told him to savor this week. To revel in his accomplishments and the recognition his work has brought him. And to remember this day, in six months, when work is hell once again, and he thinks no one ever ‘sees’ him, or stops to acknowledge his contribution.

Yes, a Red Letter Week for The Eldest.

And Red Letter Day for me too, because he called home to share his news.

That’s an A+ (in red ink) on Mom’s Report Card.

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  1. [...] Afterhood Reflections of a Once and Future Mom « Red Letter Days [...]

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