Monday, December 28, 2009

End It With A Letter

I usually do some type of blog to end the year. A re-cap, if you will. But this year, instead of looking back and recalling events, I think I would rather leave my loved ones with something to take in to 2010 with them. Having said that, here is my letter to you:

To Whom It May Concern: (I’ve secretly always loved starting letters like that…)

I’m going to start off by thanking you for being in my life. Now I know I don’t know exactly who you are as I type this or as you read it, but regardless, I’m thanking you. Something you have done or said has affected my life in 2009, either in a positive or negative manner. Whatever the case, it has brought me to the point that I am at right now, and I am grateful for that fact.

For my pretty ladies, my sistahs, my girlfriends, take this next part in to 2010 with you. I want you to know how incredibly blessed I am to have you as a part of my life. Your words inspire my words. Your acts inspire my acts. All of you inspire me through your daily lives: your careers, your hobbies, your willingness to open your heart, your endless humor, your desire to make this world a more compassionate place. Each of you are leaving your mark on this world in a wonderful way. I want each of you to know that whatever you want to do in life, I whole heartedly believe that you can achieve it. I have no doubt that you are the most interesting souls I will ever know. I am beyond excited to see what happens to each of you in the future because I fully believe that the best has yet to happen to us. To those of you who are taken, I’m grateful that a man was smart enough to realize your value, and your happiness fuels my patience in waiting for mine to show up. To my single ladies (go ahead, sing the song, you know you want to, I’ll wait!), I am shocked that man has not opened his eyes fully to appreciate your intelligence, humor, bravery and glow. And to the one that I know feels like she will never be loved again and who feels like she doesn’t want to love again, my heart breaks for you. But it is also healed by the fact that I know you are wrong. You deserve every ounce of love that can possibly be given to you. So love yourself, and on the days that you find it too difficult to do that, let me know, because I’ll step in and help you out. I couldn’t write something like this without being surrounded by an amazing group of women. Each one of you are brilliant, in every sense of the word. Each of you, in your own special way, are helping me become a better woman.

For my brothers, my guys, my heavy lifters, this is for you. Thank you for helping me to remember that I don’t always have to be in charge or do everything myself. I know I have a tendency to come in, assess the situation and take over. If you’ve met my mother, then you understand that I come by that honestly. Thank you for lifting the boxes, carrying the big stuff, cutting the grass, and every other chore you’ve saved me from doing. But that street runs both ways. Thank you for giving me someone to take care of. Lord knows I need someone to eat all my cooking, and I’m grateful for the bottomless pits called your appetites. Thank you for your respect, your love, your humor (even when slightly inappropriate), your strong shoulders. Should I ever end up in another relationship, that man is going to have a lot to live up to thanks to all of you. To my special five guys, I can honestly say I never imagined you all would be in my life all at once again, but I grateful beyond words that you are. Thank you for reminding me that in order to take care of everyone else, I don’t have to completely lose myself… that it’s okay to dance in my chair and sing along at the top of my lungs for hours and take road trips with my favorite girls… that it’s good to do something for me every once in a while. You’ve made me laugh hysterically and cry just as much (good tears, I promise). You’ve sung me to sleep. You’re the reason I have so many of the amazing women in my life that part of this letter is directed at. You reminded me of what I forgot for a few years: myself. I love you beyond words.

I hope all of you go in to 2010 with a heart full of love, passion, compassion and laughter. Use your eyes not just to look, but to see. Use your ears not just to hear, but to listen. Most importantly, use your heart not just to feel, but to give.

With All My Heart,

Monday, December 14, 2009

Be The Sunrise

"The sunrise, of course, doesn't even care if we watch it or not. It will keep on being beautiful, even if no one bothers to look at it." - Gene Amole

"How will that make me look? What will they think?" These are the questions that have been posed to me for the past few weeks. I'd like to say that I stumbled upon this quote, but I feel like it was brought to me to help me say this: Stop worrying about what others will think. Your words, actions and reactions should be an expression of your soul. You should do the right thing, the kind thing, the loving thing because you want to and because it is an expression of who you are, not because you want to be looked upon with favor. Be like the sunrise. Be beautiful because it is who you are, not because you want someone to watch.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

It's Not Every Day...

It's not every day that you see a skinhead with swastikas tattooed on his hands and neck walk up to a black lady and give her a hug, thanking her for feeding him because he's homeless. But last Sunday was that day.

It's not every day that one of the top funeral homes of the region buries a former homeless street musician, donating everything from the casket to the suit to the plot, choosing to bury him among some of the greatest musical performers in country music. But the Saturday after Thanksgiving was that day.

It's not every day that people walking out of an Exxon station give horrified looks to a woman dressed up for a business meeting because she's choosing to hug her friend, who just happens to be homeless. But today was that day.

It's not every day that people gather under a bridge with pots and pans full of warm, home-cooked food, bags full of clothing and blankets, and smiles on their faces and in their hearts to serve what could be them if the situation was even the slightest bit different.

It's not every day that we love our fellow man, despite short-comings, faults, addictions and unfortunate circumstances. But it should be.