[callout title=Saturday Cheat Day Disclaimer]
Here at Greatist, we believe in taking a day off. Instead of our regular programming Saturdays, our writers get a chance to write about living the greatist lifestyle and, basically, whatever they want. This is one of those awesome articles. Enjoy!

My dad taught me many things over the past 21 years.  From riding a two-wheeler to shooting a 22-caliber pistol, we’ve covered the bases of any normal father-daughter relationship (or maybe just normal when your dad’s a nationally ranked marksman). But the most important thing my father taught me can be traced back to the 2004 baseball season.

As fans of the Boston Red Sox (another thing I learned from dear old dad), we hoped this season would finally break the curse of the Bambino. Our Boston boys started the season like any other team, a mix of wins and losses. In the beginning of May, however, the Sox started a series of heart wrenching games. I think we went six games without a single victory. Always the pessimist, I wanted to hang up my baseball cap and wait 'til next season. During one of my rants, my dad uttered these simple words: “It’s not how you start the race. It’s how you finish it.”

Like any angsty teen, I ignored and put on a smile, pretending I agreed (or even listened). Then, as if my dad’s words were some Harry Potter-like spell, the Sox started to step up their game.  They started some serious winning streaks (remember their ten straight victories in September?), and started restoring hope throughout Red Sox Nation. I still doubted their chances of making it into the World Series, but my dad stayed strong and believed they would win.

And they did. One cold October night, I witnessed my first lunar eclipse and my first Red Sox World Series victory– all with my dad by my side.

Ever since then I’ve kept my dad’s words of wisdom in the back of my mind. My dad made me realize that we will all struggle on occasion, whether in school, in work, or in sports, and we all make mistakes. But through positive thoughts and positive actions (and a strong support system), we can easily overcome any obstacle that comes our way. Even if that obstacle is an 86-year curse.

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