Different is good.”
When Bill Murray, a.k.a. Phil Connors, uttered those famous words in the movie Groundhog Day in 1993 my streak was at 37. It ended this past Monday at 1,268, and different felt … well, different.
One thousand, two hundred and sixty-eight consecutive Mondays with at least one kid living under our roof came to a screeching halt. The empty nest descended like the end of summer for a teacher. Good, but not good.
On Monday, the house was quiet. Not just any old quiet; the kind of quiet that comes when Katherine Gravitt is not around. She has a way of creating noise in a place – good kind of noise. Noise that makes you feel valuable and necessary and glad to be a dad.
I keep reminding myself that we didn’t raise our four daughters to keep them, but it is still quiet. The silence tempts me to cling to what was. Twelve hundred and sixty-eight Mondays happened so fast. Emerson was right.
But as the leader of my family, I recognize it is time to let go. No more horse in the driveway or late night chats. No more delegating trash-duty or the dishes. The stories are told, the homework is done, and the shoes – lots of shoes – have been bought. Yes, it is time to let go.
I’m still not sure Phil Connors was right. I don’t know if I believe different is good or not, but I do believe in Katherine. And for that reason, I’m okay with the streak being over.
Why do you think it is so hard for leaders to let go?
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