Maybe you heard…………..Chris Brown received the Life Time Achievement Award from EdisonReport at Lightfair this year:
Chris and I agree that the best of times is right NOW! It really is the best of times for us. Good friends like to share those good times. We really are blessed. Well, since that joyous night at Lightfair, I’ve been thinking: Why? Why do two good friends feel that after a lifetime in the lighting industry, why do we feel that NOW is the time we love life the most. I think I found the answer…….
Life really comes in stages. I’m sure you heard of this before but maybe not quite this way. Going back many many many years, it was the HAVE TO stage. Growing up within a family unit, you know you have to go to school; you have to study; you have to eat your spinach; if you lived with Italian parents, you have to finish everything in your plate or you have to sit there until you do; you have to go in the Army (yes folks, back when I was growing up, it was a have to); you have to leave the house (another have to in my family).
Then the era of WANT TO began: you want to get married; you want to have children; you want to go to work for Westinghouse Lamp (after the Army, that’s what I wanted to do in 1965); you want to get an MBA; you work hard because you want to succeed; you want to make enough to support you family; you want to be sure your kids get a good education (remembering that they are in the have to stage). The WANT TO stage is an interesting time. You don’t always get what you want, sometimes the opposite happens, you get blasted with what you just do not want. But you realize that “this too shall pass” and you move on. With the support of family, friends, loved one, you work it out and the want to era continues…..
Then the best of times that Chris and I talk about happens………..it’s the GET TO stage. You get to wake up every morning and thank God for making it this far; you get to still work in this wonderful lighting industry; you get to go to lunch every month with lifetime high school friends; you get to go to lunch every month with friends you worked with most of your life (for me it’s the Westinghouse crowd as well as Philips); you get to go to your kids weddings; you get to meet your daughters-in-law (I have three sons and they married the most wonderful women I have ever met….what a blessing); you get to be there when your grandkids are born (I have 8…4 and 4); you get to go to their soccer games, their hockey games, their baseball / softball games, their basketball, lacrosse, football, on and on; you get to go to Day with Grandpa; you get to go to their graduations; you get to be with the love of your life (Linda is her name for me……… another blessing). I can go on and on in this wonderful GET TO stage. My hope is that you can too.
What a journey………….we moved from HAVE TO to WANT TO to GET TO. Of course, and I acknowledge, life is more complicated than this. Some are not so lucky and may not experience any of these stages for whatever reason, or, at the very least, have more negative than positive feeling during their stages of life. That’s sad but my intention is to encourage you to think about the good times, to make the effort to remember those precious times in your life that made you happy. It may be more times than you realize and if you are lucky enough to live during the GET TO stage, thank God for this blessing and enjoy your life to its fullest.