Jackie Gingrich Cushman

After committing to learn, Jimmy decided it would be best to risk life and limb the final day of our vacation. He made it through the morning lesson with a snowboard coach whose two favorite words were dude and awesome (according to Jimmy, he was an awesome coach). While Jimmy took a lesson, our children and I skied on a neighboring mountain. Connecting via phone right before lunch, we decided to meet up for lunch midway. We would have to traverse a few trails to get there, and he would have to come down a steep blue trail to reach the location.

Not surprisingly, he beat us there.

After lunch we travelled up the mountain again to come down together. Jimmy and the children went on the blues, while I travelled down the greens, intersecting them on occasion. They made it down. Jimmy assured me at the end that his thighs were on fire and likely to melt the snow from the mountain.

He accomplished what he set out to do -- snowboard down the mountain on the first day with his family. As for me, I accomplished my goal of skiing with friends and family and not getting hurt (not much of a goal, but it was mine).

At the end of our last day, right before the lifts closed for the day, our son asked me if I would go for one more run. Exhausted, and knees hurting, I said, "Dad will take you up for one last run." I hoped I was right. A few minutes later, Jimmy snowboarded down with our daughter.

When asked if he would take Robert down for one last run, he said absolutely, and off they went to the gondola, to ride up for the last run of our trip.

What a joy to see them come down the mountain together. A goal accomplished, driven by the right fuel -- family.

Jackie Gingrich Cushman

Jackie Gingrich Cushman is a speaker, syndicated columnist, socialpreneur, and author of "The Essential American: 25 Documents and Speeches Every American Should Own," and co-author of “The 5 Principles for a Successful Life: From Our Family to Yours”.