Life is enjoying the journey

Published 12:00 am Saturday, January 4, 2003

One has to like the feel a new year has. It's kind of like putting on that new T-shirt for the first time, or that new pair of shoes, it just feels clean, fresh and so right.

Oh sure, the shirt is going to get spilled on and the shoes dirty, but at least for a few moments one can enjoy the pleasure of a new beginning.

So it is with a New Year. With the flip of a page all of us can leave 2002 behind and start again in 2003. Perhaps this is the year we get everything right. We fulfill all of our resolutions, work hard, play hard and enjoy what every day brings. Perhaps this is the year we will suffer no stress, no injuries, no losses and no problems. Again, just maybe 2003 will be the year.

Email newsletter signup

All of us know such a scenario isn't going to happen. The New Year will most likely be blemished by the time you read this column. Tragedy will strike. The pressures of work and home will bring unwanted stress, as well as numerous other things none of us expect to occur.

No one's life is perfect and none of us can avoid all of the pitfalls, but we can minimize the pitfalls and enjoy the moments.

Not one big on resolutions, I have one simple one that I'm certain I can keep in 2003. My goal is simply to slow down and enjoy the moment.

Slowing down is not an easy thing to do with a 1-year-old at home. However, during the first year of fatherhood I've discovered the joy of taking the time to see things through my daughter's eyes.

Where before I may have been able to zip through a store, speed through dinner and bounce from one task to the next, fatherhood has brought a bit of serenity to my days. There is nothing like going home at night and being greeted by a youngster wanting nothing more than your love and attention. Five minutes of playing and thoughts regarding employees, customers and business plans painlessly slip away.

What my daughter has helped me discover, or perhaps just relearn, is life is full of new beginnings. There are not only New Years, but new days, new weeks, new months, new hours, new minutes and new seconds. There are new opportunities, new challenges, new sunsets and new sunrises. The world is full of opportunities for us to shed the burdens of what has happened in the past and to start over, if the opportunity is seized.

Like many, I've been caught dreaming about the destination and longing for it to arrive. The journey has largely been ignored.

Well, it took a new beginning to realize life's journey is the prize. The plan now is to slow down and make it a long, enjoyable journey.

Happy new beginnings and Happy New Year.

Neal Ronquist can be reached at 434-2201 or by e-mail at