Expectations (HLD 158)

27 Aug 2020

Accompanying my dog on her early(ish) morning pee and sniff jaunt, I did as usual have multiple opportunities to interact with strangers with the polite “Morning!”. Even “Good morning!” if time and dog wee permitted.

As we walked past a family farewelling some school kids off for their day of educational enlightenment, I overheard the mum telling her kids, fairly emphatically, to “Have a GREAT day” – the emphasis was hers not mine.

Just how good is your day meant to be?

I vividly recall picking up teenage boys after school, and asking how their day was. Being teenage boys and incapable of articulating anything really, the response was usually a grunt. I did get fairly familiar with these grunts and could after a decade or two determine that some grunts meant “OK”, some meant “Not good”, and some meant “Absolutely brilliant – best ever”. There’s many nuances of teenage boy grunting that only an experienced or highly imaginative parent can interpret.

One of my sons, who will remain nameless to protect his identity, (but it’s the youngest), once articulated his amazement at a day spent snorkelling in the north west of our state. He stated that “This has been the BEST day EVER!”, a statement his two male immediate relatives have never let him forget.

What’s our expectations on our day? Do we hope for everything to magically fall into place, all our plans for the day to go swimmingly (snorkellingly??), to get to the end of the day and decide that today had been the best day ever? Or do we hope that things fall into place roughly as we’d hoped, and that at the end of the day we can acknowledge that today was a good day?

Is a good day when everything we want to happen, happens? And is a great day one when all that stuff happens, plus unexpected good things happen to us?

Should we expect life to throw things at us – hopefully good – that will add to our desired ‘good’ day?

And is my desire for complete strangers to have a ‘good morning’ indicative of the lack of a relationship I have with them, whereas the mum ushering her offspring off to be educated desires more for her children than a merely good day and hope they have a ‘great’ one??

I often, when writing a birthday greeting for someone, debate whether to wish them a lovely day, a great day, or a wonderful day. It possibly depends on the relative age of a person and whether it’s a significant year being celebrated. You would hope that every person having a birthday would have a better than normal day, but often the effort of blowing out a lot of candles can be detrimental to their respiratory health. So who knows?

I hope you all have a good day. I’ll be extra happy to hear if you have a great day. And I’d love to hear if you have a spectacular day.

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