Monday, March 15, 2021

1990 - Leadership Lessons from John Hughes (and my Wife)


Lee Anne Leschi Ferreira

(Fifty Nifty Years in United States Series)

LOVE – “nuff said.” 

Lee Anne and I had already known one another for three years before we became a couple. 1990 was the year we were married after dating for three years.

Thinking back, our first date date was seeing “Fatal Attraction.” However we started dating in the 80’s and I define most of the decade by John  Hughes movies. Not just the ones he directed, but the ones he wrote as well like, Ferris Bueller, The Breakfast Club, Vacation movies, Home Alone, Planes Trains and Automobiles as well as She’s Having A Baby to name a few.

So, Lee Anne and I would have what she called “moments” in our early relationship. Those movies of John Hughes all had great “moments” in them. Yes “moments” is in quotes for a reason. I know I have not mentioned them yet.

My favorite moment from Ferris is when he says, "Life moves pretty fast. If you don't stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it." We have had plenty of starts and stops along the way and I don't really believe we have missed much.

As we were dating and contemplating marriage we talked about everything. This included children and how we wanted to raise our children. The Emilio Estevez character even says, My God, are we gonna be like our parents?" We have done things differently at times. One of our favorite rules has been "if they are old enough to ask, they are old enough to hear the honest truth."

Our life has been like the Griswold's on their different vacation treks. Our journey has been like what Clark Griswold said, "Why are we flying? Because getting there is half the fun."

Our life living at the different camps has included so many of our extended family. We love hearing from them and what has happened in their growth and journeys. It is quite the opposite of the Home Alone moment where Kevin says, "This house is so full of people it makes me sick. When I grow up and get married, I'm living alone."

And those relatable moments in Planes, trains and Automobiles with both Steve Martin and John Candy's character. Candy's rant that ends with "I like...I like me. My wife likes me. My customers like me.. 'Cause I'm the real article. What you see is what you get." She continues to like me and in a paragraph or two, you'll see she loves me.

Lee Anne and her "moments." Only...I would miss them. I have missed so many moments along the way. Yes, I’m one of those folks that just misses things and later might realize it if you hit me over the head. Lee would have to nudge me and say, "we just had a moment."

Anyway, Lee Anne and I have been together as a married couple for over 30 years. I always say, “I have been happily married for 30 years.” And Lee Anne, will say she has been “happily married for 8.7.” “Not consecutive.” I know this because she tells. She’ll say or text or email. “I love you today.” 

In fact this last year has been great and the last time she let me know that - was just last week. I’m nearing 31 years and when counting those up; she is on 8 years, eight months and fourteen days. Back to the “moments.”

The sum of all this lies in that moment at the end of She's having a Baby, where Kevin Bacon's character says: "And in the end, I realized that I took more than I gave, I was trusted more than I trusted, and I was loved more than I loved. And what I was looking for was not to be found but to be made."

Our life has been all these moments of love, leadership and John Hughes movies.

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