Last week, I received the following text from my best friend: “He did it! I just watched Samson roll from front to back!”
We’ve been rooting for her 6-month-old son to start rolling, and last Friday was the glorious day.
I spend most of my days with this little guy, so when I got her text, I was thrilled. I let out an excited shriek, did a little jump, and shed a tear of joy. This new skill was worthy of all celebration. Though the victory was his, I was intricately connected to it.
Immediately after this burst of enthusiasm, I thought, “As adults, why don’t we celebrate our victories with as much excitement? Why have we lost the ability to shamelessly applaud ourselves, and others, for huge strides and changes?”
Truthfully, I don’t know.
Perhaps we think it’s prideful, especially if we grew up in an environment in which humility was confused with self-devaluation. Perhaps it’s too vulnerable. Maybe we’re blind to our own progress or just too busy to see it. It’s likely we’ve been pounded down by life’s defeats, and therefore, don’t really know how to celebrate our victories. Or maybe we think it’s infantile and that we’ve outgrown the need for earnest validation.
The truth is though, we never outgrow this need.
Whether we’re 6-months-old or 60, celebrating milestones is the food of life. Our accomplishments, emotional growth, and spiritual maturity are worthy of a little jump. Watching our friends and loved ones reach new highpoints warrants tears of joy. We need others to travel alongside us, and validate our progress with an excited shriek, especially when we’re not objective enough to notice.
Genuinely recognizing our growth, and that of others, isn’t prideful or indulgent. Rather, it’s an honest celebration of our ability to transform, heal, and mature. It’s an authentic reflection of how intricately connected we are to one another’s victories.
May we not be ashamed to proclaim, “I did it!” “We did it!”