I started 2014 in a stadium filled with over 100,000 people realizing a desire that began over two years ago.
In 2011, the NHL announced that the outdoor Winter Classic game for January 1, 2013 was going to be played at the Big House in Ann Arbor, Michigan between the Detroit Red Wings and the Toronto Maple Leafs. When I heard about it I knew I wanted to be there. Not just wanted but needed to be. My favorite team, the Leafs, playing against one of their greatest rivals, in a historic event only an hour from my home.
I was told it would be impossible to get tickets.
I tried everything I could think of. I went on every list, entered lotteries, bought scratch tickets, asked anyone I knew. I spent countless hours following up leads to get tickets. They were sold out. On resale sites, at inflated prices, there was no way that I , along with my husband and three kids would be able to go. I was devastated.
Then, there was the lockout and I was the only one praying they wouldn’t find common ground before they had to cancel the Winter Classic.
Now, I am not saying that God answered my prayers and got the Winter Classic cancelled by a major professional sport’s lockout that cost millions of dollars so I would have another shot at Winter Classic tickets. He did, however, give me the fortitude to believe past the unbelievable and be ready when an opportunity came up.
In January 2013, when the NHL got back on track and the Winter Classic was officially rescheduled for January 1, 2014, I redoubled my efforts. My intentions were solely focused on getting tickets.
Then, a miracle happened.
I got an email from the Detroit Red Wings organization giving me an opportunity to order tickets for the Winter Classic as a “valued season ticket holder.” You know I am not a Red Wings fan and certainly not a season ticket holder. Somewhere along the way I got put on a list. I don’t know how. I don’t need to know how. My intention paired with my action created the ability to realize my dream. A very simple equation.
What most people miss in that equation is two and a half years passing, times when it seemed like there was no way this could be possible, tenacity, creativity, and hope.
I never gave up on the idea that I would be there.
How many times have we given up hope, said it is not in cards, there is no way, it is a waste of my time? How many times have people told you that you need to grow up, stop being a dreamer, concentrate on concrete things, on real things? We give it up, let it go, move on, but each time we do, a little piece of us gives up, lets go, and moves on too.
I started 2014 with the best possible learning curve I could that will set me up for a great year. If you want it bad enough, believe when it seems impossible, do all you can to make it happen. then you have a chance of living the life you were meant to live. If you don’t, you are just surviving. And that is not what we are here for.
I stood in a stadium of 105, 000 people, in –10C, snowy weather, singing the Canadian national anthem with probably 50,000 Canadian hockey fans and watched the Leafs win in a shoot out, living the dream.
That is what I want for you.
Happy New Year!!!