At dinner each eve when I was a kid, my dad would ask me, “What did you learn today?” Meaning what did I learn at school, or on the tennis court, or in life. Learning something new to him each day was of great importance, something he very much wanted to pass on to me. It is something I still to this day hear him ask me in the back of my mind. It can be as simple as a new word. On Instagram I started following French Words which posts a new word or phrase each day. Thought the one yesterday was quite fitting. Cheers to new possibilities in the new year!
And it feels so good. I think we are so lucky to get to be whatever age we are. I have felt this way since my father was diagnosed with cancer in his mid fifties. The above photo was sent to me yesterday from my brother. The note attached said it was from the first meeting of Watson Kennedy, as it looks like I am taking notes. That photo and that comment just made me cry. But in a very good way. On this my 50th birthday, I am thinking so much of my dad and wishing he could be here with me to celebrate the day. But I know he is. Just in a different way. It is 6 a.m. and I am just about to go out and hit my first tennis ball in twenty years this morning. I had just the most wonderful dinner last night with my husband, just us two, at home, with Bailey snuggled up on her Burberry blanket next to the dining table. A yummy dinner with a special bottle of wine from our trip to Santa Barbara earlier in the year. We just talked and talked about all the cool stuff we have been so fortunate to do in the last 25+ years. I am one lucky/fortunate/blessed fellow. I feel it each day and am grateful always.
Someone at the shop asked me the other day about my life philosophy as I reach 50. It really has not changed much over the years, but rather gets stronger. We are all so fortunate for this moment, today, right now. Each day. Always. It is what we have. Enjoy it. Thrive in that moment. The small moments make up our life, our story.
Thank you all, for being part of mine.
Much, much love,
I bet you never thought you would see a Whopper with cheese and a side of fries on my daily post. Truth is, I can’t type that word or see that image and not think of my father, Kennedy Watson. Even though he died 25+ years ago, there has not been a single day since that I have not thought of him in some way. Food and the love of food played an important part in his life. Some of my fondest memories are based around his love of the meal. The moment I turned 16 my parents gave me a car. They both had driven me around so much to all the tennis lessons and tournaments, I think the car was more a gift to them as it released them of having to shuttle me around. His office was not far from my high school, so one of the first things I did after I got the car was to pick up his favorite lunch of a Whopper with fries. We sat and had lunch at his desk, talking away as we ate. Being the youngest of 4, I spent quite a bit of time alone with my parents, as my siblings had all moved out by the time I was 12. Add to that all the travel I did playing in tournaments around the country, my Dad accompanying me to many of them–we talked about most everything and we laughed together. His sense of humor is one of the things I miss most. We really liked the time we got to be together. I not only loved my Dad, I really liked him. Looking back on it all now, I feel so lucky to have been able to spend all that quality time with him when I was younger, because I was not able to in my adulthood. I look back so fondly on those Whopper lunches that became a ritual several times a month until I went off to college. A few times a year when I am out & about running errands, I will stop and get a Whopper lunch and just sit in the car and remember those times and remember him–his smart wit, his huge heart, and just his unique way of being. Then later that day when Ted asks me what I did for lunch, I say I had lunch with my Dad, and he knows just where & what I had.
It is a day I will spend with my amazing memories of my own father, Kennedy Watson, who passed away 25 years ago this month, after an incredible battle (actually more of a fight, as he fought it till his very last breath) with melanoma. His training as a Marine served him well. There is not a single day that has passed that I have not thought of him. He was always my greatest cheerleader in any endeavor I chose–I still feel his support bolstering me each day.
For those of you still fortunate to have your Dad still with you, relish each moment you get to spend with him. Savor every smile, argument, meal, trip, gift, phone call. Each moment really. For they will always serve as grateful reminders and loving memories throughout your life.