I’ve been putting things in the green bag for years.
Stuff that my dad gave me as a child. Lessons. Stories. Advice.
Stuff that my wife gave me during our courtship and after we were married. Love letters and cards.
Stuff from my son and daughter. Stuff about my son and daughter.
Stuff about my childhood. Old report cards. Grade school class photos. #embarrassing
It was all crammed in a green bag. My life. The stuff I decided to save for another day. The stuff I hadn’t looked at in years. Forgotten.
I opened it up a few nights ago. It was late. The family was asleep. Here’s what happened in the next 25 minutes:
I fell in love with my wife all over again. There were two letters in there that she wrote early in our marriage, letters telling me how happy she was to be my wife and how much I mean to her. I cried. I realized that I haven’t lived up to the standard set by the Matt that she wrote to 20 years ago. I’ve vowed to live up to those letters again.
I was reminded that I have two amazing kids. And that I need to count my blessings for them being part of my life. It’s hard to beat a child’s love, isn’t it? They’re living gifts from God. They have no motivations, just pure love. I cried some more. (And then I laughed at some of the funny things we’ll use as blackmail when they bring serious boy/girlfriends over to meet us. Ha. Get the popcorn ready for that.)
I gained a new level of respect for my Dad. I’m sure I didn’t appreciate the stories and advice that he typed up or copied for me in my youth, but they were exactly what I needed to read now. I cried some more. Dads are the best. Mine is, at least.
It had been years since I’d gone through the green bag. It won’t be that long again.
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