Stuck In My Own Shadow

Photo taken by Ted McNeil
Photo taken by Ted McNeil

It had been a very busy day.

I was exhausted. I had a migraine and my stomach was killing me.

And so I went to sleep. At five o’clock!

My wife and kids were at school late and I was asleep before they returned home.

But I heard the front door close. Then I heard someone bounding up the steps. Next, someone jumped on the bed and was lying right next to me. So close I could feel them. Her.

It was my ten-year old daughter. She couldn’t wait to tell me about her day. She rattled off about five awesome things in less than four minutes. Wow! My migraine that had disappeared was beginning to return.

I told her I loved her and that I didn’t feel well. She got the message and went back downstairs. Within about an hour, everyone had worked their way upstairs and was in bed. By this time my stomach was feeling a little bit better and I knew that I needed some food.

So I snuck downstairs. Hoping to be alone. I wanted to jump on Voxer to share my day with my PLN. I wanted to hop on Twitter because…

Maybe I am addicted to the dopamine hits. Sitting in front of a bright screen with a migraine just does not make sense. But I did it anyway.

My stomach wasn’t yet ready for dinner-food so I decided on a bowl of cereal with some fruit. Then the silence was broken. My daughter had snuck downstairs too. She wasn’t tired yet and so she decided to join me with a bowl of cereal of her own.

She engaged and began talking to me about this and about that. I wasn’t paying attention. I was grumpy and I told her that it was late and that she needed to get back to bed. I just wanted to be alone.

Well, I got my wish. I quickly snapped out of it.

I was an ass.

And I knew it.

I apologized to her as soon as she woke up. But I still felt bad. My daughter. Who is the most beautiful ray of sunshine I have ever seen. Was trying to shine some of her light on me. And I would not allow her. I was stuck in my own shadow.

But not for long. I promised my kids that we would go bowling as soon as they got home from school. That we would get pizza and french fries and have so much fun.

Once again, I was home from school first. And once again I was exhausted and tired and lying down when they opened the front door. But this time was different.

I am getting better.

This time I heard lighter steps were heading my way. This time it was my four-year old son who had come up to greet me.

Daddy are going bo-wing?


I hopped up.

Got ready, and we went.

And we had a blast!

I am trying to be better each day.

Because life is hard. And life is stressful. And all of us have tough days.

But one thing I know I can’t allow myself to do.

One thing that I must fight with every fiber of my being.

I can’t allow myself to be stuck in my own shadow.

Lucky for me I am surrounded by magnificent rays of light.

That continue to shine on me.

Even when I may not always deserve it.

Thank you Bailey.

Thank you for not giving up on me.

I promise I will do all that I can.

To step out of my own shadow.

As long as you promise.

To always let your light shine.

My beautiful angel.


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