Recently I shared the story about my rather tense ride to the hospital with my daughter-in-law who six minutes after we arrived gave birth to a healthy 6-pound, 8-ounce baby girl. My son, Randy, and his wife, Wendi, already have three wonderful boys, Chuck, Ted and Matt. This time around they were hoping for a girl, and their dreams came true. What a blessing, and what a thrill. Every time I see a baby, I think about what a miracle it is. It's beyond comparison. To Emma Katherine Lauer, welcome to the world. I watched the reaction of your brothers when you first came home, and they think you are very special. We all do, which is why I wanted to share some thoughts about your future.
First of all, I love you, straight and simple. I promise I'll be around as long as I can to support you in whatever you choose to do with your life. What a future you have. Don't waste a moment of it. Too many people become spectators in life, fearing to get onto the field of play because they might lose. But that's not what life is all about. Life is about reaching for the stars. It's an adventure that's filled with mystery, opportunity, love and wonderment, and it's meant to be lived to the fullest. Give it everything you've got and have bundles of fun along the way.
I've said it to your brothers, and I'll say it to you. Be thankful you have been born into the greatest country in the world. Never forget how lucky you are to have your freedom. You can dream your dreams and make them come true. Remember that this nation doesn't owe any of us anything. Rather, we all owe the good ol' USA so much, especially our allegiance. Many of us take our country for granted, but people from all over the world know how lucky we are. So many want to come here where they can enjoy unfettered freedom.
There's that word again-freedom. Some people can handle it, and some can't. To certain individuals it means thinking only of themselves and their own gratification. Others are givers. They give all they can to their family, friends and others. They give of their time, talents and energy to help make a better world. They're the ones your grandmother and I respect the most.
As I have grown older, one word keeps coming to mind that I believe spells success or failure in life. That word is attitude. I've watched what a difference the proper attitude can make in peoples' lives. Those who take a positive approach to life are the lucky ones. But we all have to work at it. Sometimes it doesn't come so easily. Some people like to sit around and feel sorry for themselves. They blame their shortcomings and lack of success on others. These doom-and-gloomers focus only on the negative, failing to see opportunity. Emma, be the most enthusiastic and positive person possible. Have a smile on your face as often as you can. Give others the benefit of the doubt, and have a great sense of humor. If you do all these things, people will beat a path to your door.
There is so much I would like to say, but you'll get lots of good advice from your parents, family and friends as you go along. One thing, however, that has helped me as I've gone through life is prayer. Don't be afraid to believe in a higher power. I pray every night for my family, friends and this great nation of ours. It always helps me feel more fulfilled. I bet it will help you, too.
These are just a few of my thoughts, Emma. Nothing too complex, but I did want you to know how happy I am that you're here. We're going to have a lot of adventures together. Frankly, I can't wait.
Miracles happen every day,
Charles S. Lauer