Reason #15: He’s got his Priorities in Order

Over the past several weeks we’ve talked about the policies, ethics, and approach Obama will bring to government.

But today I’m here to talk about the person, the regular guy who just decided to take a couple of days off to head to Hawaii to see his ailing grandmother, Madelyn Payne Dunham, or “Toot” as she is known by her grandchildren. In my opinion, this proves more than anything about Obama. He’s in touch with what is “real” in life, he’s got his priorities in order.

When I got married 11 years ago the Bishop who married us, a very wise soul, had one message for my husband and me: “Know the main thing, and keep the main thing the main thing.”

As Obama nears the end of his presidential campaign and voting day approaches, I applaud him for knowing the main thing – the importance of his family – and for keeping the main thing the main thing by going to Hawaii at this critical time in his grandmother’s life. He knows he has less than two weeks until election day. But he made a choice to put it on hold for something even more important, for a chance to talk with and hug his grandmother. Political debate will be here in a few days. She might not be.

Keeping our priorities straight amidst the chatter and outright chaos of daily life –  not to mention in a race for what is arguably one of the most important and influential positions in the world today – is hard, at best. For many, it is downright impossible.

But the joy of watching our kids gets us through long hockey games in cold winter weather. The comfort of our family’s presence welcomes us home after hard days at work when we return bone tired. The warmth of our childrens’ hugs carries us through the night, until we rise in the morning to start it all over again.

Obama knows this.

And he also knows how important this visit is. Perhaps this will be the most important visit he’ll make in these long months of campaigning, a moment to stop, keep the main thing the main thing, and recognize the importance of a woman who profoundly influenced his life (and who blazed some trails in her own right!).

So kudos to Obama, as well as to the strong grandmother who helped shape who he is today.

As we grow tired of the months and months of debates and political rhetoric and eagerly await November 4th, give your kids a hug, take some time to head to a park or pumpkin patch, have a glass of wine with your spouse, and then return with your spirit intact to campaign for Obama.

And above all… know the main thing, and keep the main thing the main thing.

– Colleen, mother of three in Boulder, Colorado who savors her family time even more than a bar of fine, dark chocolate or a nice glass of Malbec.

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