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Dear Emery,

Emery and Vernon Lindsay at GNFC 2023


You are twelve years old. Thank you for stopping the daily reminders of your birthday. We didn’t forget.

I hope you are pleased with your gifts.

It’s hard to believe you’re almost a teenager. I remember your home birth on 81st and Luella in Chicago. You arrived two weeks after our midwife’s prediction.

Your mother and I thought our family was complete with you and your sister. One of your middle names means balance, reflecting this belief. But you know what happened about a year later.

Your little brother arrived.

I watched the two of you play football in the front yard Sunday. After a long day spent mostly inside due to the rain, I noticed your shared itch to get outside and play. You two kicked the ball back and forth for over an hour.

 "Come on, Dad. You've got to pick it up!" you told me earlier in the day. I passed the house during the Run in Paradise Half-marathon. You encouraged me as I pushed to 4th place.

Emery and Vernon at Run in Paradise

The route was longer this year, and I didn't win, but I did my best. You've lost your last two football games, but you played hard.  I know you understand

No excuses will erase the reality of wins and losses. Focus on how to improve for the next event.

This advice applies to playing football and working as a physicist in a lab. You will win and lose games; science experiments will succeed and fail. However, the opportunity to grow is present in both professions.

To excel, you must work hard, remain deeply committed to your life's purpose, and receive instructions from teachers, coaches, and parents. This means less Fortnite and more learning.

Your mother and I have witnessed your leadership skills at school and on the football team. After Saturday’s loss to the Wings FC, you teared up and stormed off the field. Several other players followed.

We've also witnessed how other children respond to you. They admire your intelligence and charisma.

I think you call that W-RIZZ.

It’s okay to get upset when playing sports and during other activities. Remember, you can also control your emotions before they cloud your thinking and limit opportunities.

After Saturday’s loss, you left your water bottle behind. You had to return for it after making your way to the car.

In other scenarios, the consequences can be dire if you lose your temper. Remember,  you are very capable, so keep it together.

Okay, enough lecturing on your birthday. Know that your mother and I love you. Watch the video below for highlights of your football games and to answer your questions about passion and purpose.

Happy 12th B-day E!





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