Cautiously Optimistic

Cautiously Optimistic

Like most moms out there, I found out I was pregnant with my son by taking a home pregnancy test. After a few weeks, we went to our first doctor visit. The first round of blood work I had done there came back saying I wasn’t pregnant. Devastated, I went in for more blood work which came back saying that yes, I was. Two out of three tests said we had a baby on the way but that one negative was bothering me. What am I supposed to feel? I asked my sister, the nurse. Cautiously optimistic, she replied.

It’s a phrase I’ve returned to often. Are we going to be able to afford a year at home with the baby? Let’s remain cautiously optimistic. Will everyone get along over the holidays? I’m feeling cautiously optimistic.

How do you feel about the new Penn State hire? Cautiously optimistic.

It’s almost getting to be a tired refrain, the arguing about Coach Paterno. Many out there wanting to stop harping on the legend that was and look solely toward the future. Just as many others refusing to let the topic drop lest he gets forgotten completely before our university finally decides the time is right to honor him, the one who played a major role in bringing us up from local cow college to an internationally recognized university.

Then on top of that we’re feeling thankful or burned or both over the O’Brien Moment.

But without much a do, we have ourselves a(nother) new coach. Hooray?

Coach Franklin came flying into State College and according to all reports, hasn’t come to rest yet. He’s beenPenn State Coach Football everywhere you’d expect and many places you wouldn’t. He’s been the guest of Sue Paterno and introduced to kitchen crews. He’s shaking hands and posing for selfies.

He’s also saying all the right things. A Pennsylvania boy with a Penn State heart. He’s spoken about pride and the obvious reasons Penn State is already a source of pride. He’s described himself as fiercely loyal. He’s mentioned success with honor. He’s spoken of his desire to make an impact. He’s involving the stakeholders current, past, alumni, students, faculty. He’s showing his desire to be part of the community. He’s not afraid to speak of the past.

He’s got some charisma, too. I can’t help but start to feel excited. Maybe he IS the guy.

We’ve had the unfortunate experience recently to learn that just because a person says the right things, doesn’t mean he’ll do them. After a lifetime of integrity, it’s tough to take. So while the negative still bothers us a bit, it’s okay to be cautiously optimistic.

Integrity is a quality that remains to be seen. It will take time to rise to the surface. A lot of clarity will come this season and in the seasons to come.

I, for one, am hopeful. Here’s to cautious optimism. Here’s to the James Franklin Era.

james franklin t-shirt