Recently I had the incredible honor of attending my son’s dissertation defense. It was amazing and inspiring! I am biased as his mom, but I’m convinced it was life-altering for him—and for me, too. It was his ultimate academic achievement—sharing his broad expertise from years of deep study and diligent work. It was a joyous gift for me—witnessing him accomplishing his life goal. I am a truly fulfilled parent—my son is living his passion—happily following his calling.
Last week, I saw a picture of him at his new job. He’s smiling from ear to ear and his eyes loudly announce “I did it!” He’s proudly sitting behind his big office desk in his university department newly established in a nearly century-old converted large house. It comes complete with high ceilings and narrow tall windows, steam radiators in room corners, creaky oak floors, and heavy old doors.
Seeing the picture immediately triggered a heart-warming memory from my childhood. I remembered visiting Dad at his office—and him sitting behind his huge desk. He worked in a century-old dairy facility converted to a university department, and his office was a milk can storage room during the dairy years. I clearly remember deep horizontal gouges along the walls, a few feet above the floor, where milk cans left their mark—permanently. The antique building had high ceilings and narrow tall windows with distorted glass, steam radiators in every room, very creaky oak floors, and heavy oak doors with oak-trimmed transoms.
My son’s picture brought me instant awareness and appreciation for his new generation of accomplishment. Dad would be so proud his grandson is following his own unique calling in life. And doing it in an-old, repurposed building.