Garth Callaghan has been leaving sweet notes in his daughter Emma’s lunchbox ever since she was a little girl. Written on napkins, Callaghan draws his wisdom from his own life and sources as varied as the bible and “Star Wars.” The notes began as a way to give Emma a few words of inspiration and advice alongside her PB&J, but two years ago they took on a much more poignant meaning when Garth was diagnosed with cancer. Doctors gave him an 8% chance of surviving the next 5 years. Despite the grim prognosis, Garth wanted to ensure that Emma would have one new napkin note in her lunchbox every day until her high school graduation, so he set out to write them — 826 of them, to be exact. He also started a Facebook page, Napkin Notes, to share his messages and encourage other parents to write their own lunchbox notes and “create a daily connection with your child,” one that’s much sweeter — and infinitely more meaningful — than a Hostess cupcake.
Garth’s cancer is currently in remission, and if that weren’t good news enough, it seems his daughter has started a note-making hobby of her own. In a recent post on his personal blog, Garth revealed that he recently found a napkin note from Emma in his work bag. “An arrow can only be shot by pulling it backwards,” she wrote. “So when life is dragging you back, it means it’s going to launch you into something awesome.” [People]