When I was a little boy, my Grandmother used to tell me not to say anything until I knew what I was going to say! I guess even way back then I loved to talk! Some things never change! I have a faint recollection of my Great- Grand-Mother too. She was the kinda spooky old lady that watched everything with the eye of a eagle, kept the same smile on her face, and never spoke! Both of those Ladies have had an influence over the last couple of hours of my evening.
Tonight I have had the same urge to jump right in and put myself into your conversations that I always have! Although I really did not have anything to say! Realizing this, I have remained silent! My Grand-Mother is proud! I have also taken a page from my Great-Grand-Mothers book! I have been sitting here with a fixed smile on my face as I have watched my family go about their evening! I am greatful to be a part of this family! I see you playing and teasing each other. I see some of you" Whistling thru the Graveyard ". For anyone unfamilar with the term, I means you make happy noises to hide your fear! I know that there are a few of you who are still in fear that you will blow your quits! And that is OK! Blowing a quit is something to be afraid of! And if that fear keeps you vigilant, that is good! I am not going to be the one to tell you that you can do this without the fear! I see some of you who did not make it on your first try! But you have made it now! There were people who beat you up pretty bad! And there were people who picked you up and dusted you off. They gave you encouragement to make it. And you did it! Some of you made it because you had to show the ones who beat you up that you were better than they thought you were! Secret is, they knew all along you could do it if you got mad enough! And you did it!
The question I am putting out to you tonight is: How did you make it this far? What helped you? Who said the one thing that made the light come on? Where are you, and where are you going? Lets take moment and give thanks to each other, and appreciate where we have come from, and where we are! Feel free to pat yourself on the back! Please go first! I will just sit here and smile for a little while longer!