As most of you know, here in the United States we are celebrating Thanksgiving this…
A while back, I had an early morning flight for an out-of-town trip. It was still dark outside when my wife dropped me off at the airport. I went to the security check area and got in line. Because the Atlanta airport is so large, there are many different lines that take you through the security process. After making it through the line, I was gathering my belongings and happened to glance up at the line that was just a few feet across from me. There I noticed a gentleman who was blind being led through the process by an older man. Since going through security is often challenging when you can see perfectly, I couldn’t imagine what it would be like to have to navigate through it being blind! My heart went out to him. I felt grateful the gentleman had someone to help him. I glanced at the man again and suddenly thought I recognized him. But, just to be certain, I asked the female security guard who was standing next to me, “Is that Stevie Wonder?!” She smiled and said, “Yes, it is.”
Now, I suppose it is time to reveal something about me that not many people know; I have had a wonderful life because of WOW moments. I have never been afraid or ashamed to take a chance or to try something that is a little bit unusual or different. I don’t live my life in a reckless manner, but I do want to seize every opportunity when and where appropriate. I immediately decided this was one of those times.
I called my wife April on her phone and asked where she was. She told me she was about ten minutes away from the airport. Then she said, “Is something wrong?” I asked her to hold on for a second.
I waited for Stevie, the older gentleman, and his bodyguard to finish the security process. As they moved away from the security area I walked up beside Stevie Wonder and quickly said, “Good morning! My wife is a huge Stevie Wonder fan. I have her on the phone. Would you say ‘hello’ to her? It would just make her day!” I wasn’t sure if the bodyguard or older gentleman traveling with him would tell me to get lost, but I had to take the chance!
All of a sudden, a huge grin came over Stevie Wonder’s face and he agreed to do it. As I handed the phone to Stevie, he asked my wife’s name. I told him it was April and he said to her, “Is this April?” When she acknowledged that it was, he started singing, “I just called to say I love you!” I couldn’t believe it; I had not even thought to ask him to sing to my wife the song he wrote! I was only hoping he would say hello to her.
More than a little confused, April asked, “Who is this?” He answered, “Stevie.” Her next question was, “Stevie who?” “Stevie Wonder!” he said. I could hear her scream through the phone! Stevie talked to her for a few minutes and was as nice as he could be. He was still smiling when he handed the phone back to me and thanked me for the opportunity to talk to my wife. I assured him that I was the one who was thankful for his gesture of kindness. He had been so gracious to cooperate with me and cordial when talking to her. I was impressed that someone with such world-wide notoriety would take a moment to have fun with someone he didn’t even know.
Taking the phone back I asked April, “How does it feel for Stevie Wonder to sing his original song, I Just Called to Say I Love You?” She was laughing. She could hardly believe it – and neither could I! I don’t think we will ever listen to Stevie Wonder sing again without having memories that he personally sang one of his all-time greatest hits to my wife on the phone in the early morning hours at the Atlanta airport.
As we parted ways and went in different directions to catch our flights, I thought, “Isn’t that something? Stevie Wonder just made my wife’s day and I think it made his, too!” And, it was all because I was seeking to create a WOW moment.
See what I mean? It is incredible and so much fun to have a WOW moment. But, in order to have them, I believe you must be looking for them, seeking them, and be willing to take a chance. If you aren’t willing to take a chance, then you will never have the opportunity to experience something that will be a life-long, wonderful memory. After all…if you don’t ask the answer will always be NO!
In sharing that story with a few people, some have asked what I would have done if Stevie had not been willing to talk to my wife. The truth is that I would have accepted it and gone on about my business. But, as my father once told me, “It never costs anything to ask!”
I hope sometime in the near future you will have the opportunity to create a WOW moment for yourself or someone you love. It is not something you can plan. It is just something in which you can participate, when and where the opportunity arises. Be on the lookout! You never know when the opportunity for your next WOW moment might appear. It will be something you will enjoy and remember for the rest of your life!
Tip: Create a WOW moment in your life!
Have a great week! God bless you!
Dr. Robert A. Rohm