05/26/2011 08:29 pm ET | Updated Jul 26, 2011

Friday Night Miracles

Now what are you expecting when you read a title like "Friday Night Miracles"? H-m-m. An unexpected check in the mail? Your team winning a game that counts big time? Favorite friends in town on the same night? A night of fabulous love-making?

You're on the right track because it's the perfect time to share about what we do on Friday nights. A week ago my husband Tim and I celebrated our 30th wedding anniversary, more in love than ever before, chemistry still vibrating, filled with gratitude for having found one another, and knowing -- without a doubt -- that we have the respect, deep appreciation and love of the other. Friday Night Miracles are key to this achievement.

But it's not always been as I describe -- nor may it be in the future. Life is life. There have been pain, anger, resentment and a loneliness I would never have dreamed possible once I found the man of my dreams. I have been overcome by self-pity fueled by a list of grievances that I could prove with an ever-increasing list of disappointments. Buy me a cup of coffee, and I'll tell you all about it.

The purpose of mentioning the dark side is to generate credibility so you'll take seriously what I'm about to tell you. It's such a simple thing -- but not easy, as our dear friend Lew Epstein used to say.

We reserve every Friday night to go out to dinner, just us. From the minute we start to talk about where we'll go to taking the time needed to spruce up so we feel and look better for the occasion, the mood shifts. Once we're there, have placed our order and have our glass of wine in front of us, we take turns toasting the miracles that occurred over the past week.

Many weeks it's easy because it's been a good week. But again and again we find that even in the best of times, we have failed to step back, breathe and acknowledge the blessings in order to realize how lucky we have been. We have every right to celebrate. As busy as we have always been, we'd never have come to this positive outlook if we weren't sitting there looking for miracles to toast.

There are also nights when it doesn't come easily. When we've had some tough breaks in the week, we have to dig deeper to find miracles to toast -- but they're always there. Good things that happened that were missed in the process of getting through a rocky week. These nights are when we're more apt to expand our view, acknowledge and thank the other, count our blessings and toast the miracle of being together. These are the times when our perception transforms -- as it ought to do.

Like what, you say? OK, here are a few big ones:

  • Tim's getting the all clear after lung cancer surgery
  • My becoming an 11-year breast cancer survivor
  • Selling our home after 30 months on the market
  • Finding the home of our dreams in Denver -- at a bargain
  • The birth of our baby granddaughter, Ruby Kate
  • My sister finding out that the spot on her mammogram wasn't cancer
  • Making the first sale of our performance improvement and appraisal software

But smaller ones can be just as worthy of a toast:

  • Exercising five days
  • Cleaning out the file cabinet
  • Hosting a dinner party that had a meaningful conversation
  • Taking 30 minutes to book three trips using miles
  • Staying away from the carbs
  • A twofer on the morning of our anniversary

So, what could stop you from giving Friday Night Miracles a try? Let me count the

  1. We can't afford it.
  2. I'm afraid to.
  3. He/she would think it was silly.
  4. We're not in a good place right now.
  5. It's not the kind of thing we're used to doing.
  6. We're too busy.

And I'm sure there are more.

I say take all these reasons along with you to dinner next Friday. Give it a try. You're smart enough to know why it works on many levels. You guys are worth it.


"It takes courage to grow up and become who you really are."
--ee cummings

Let me know what you think or, better yet, how the dinner went. Either leave a comment here or email me at