Smile

Smile

Share a smile. It’s a gift so easy to give that can mean so much.

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Death of a long lost friend

Today I learned an old friend had died.  Well, friend is perhaps not the right term. He dated my older sister for years and he was 10 years my senior.  For,a time we thought he would be with our family forever.  But he was young of heart and wild in spirit.  He loved my sister but wasn”t mature so she let him go.

Who knows what happened to him in the past 20 years? Certainly not me.  But today I learned of his death and I feel sad he passed on so young.  I remember a man who made me laugh, who liked rock music and played it loud in his car,a man who was always ready to play a game and who made my mom smile.  I seem to remember only the good things.  That is how life should be.  

Life can be hard and remembering the bad only makes it more painful.  Does it ever help to have bitter feelings, resentments, to be full of “If Only” statements?  I can’t think that it does.  Today I remember the good about Rick and I believe I always will.

Til we meet again.Image

The Day My World Changed Forever

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When I was six, my dad entered the hospital. Everyone said he had heart trouble and needed to get better. I interpreted that to mean he would get better and come home.  On June 26, I was coloring at our dining room table when I heard people approaching our front door.  I excitedly thought, “Daddy’s home!”  My Mom, brother and Aunt walked in the door.  My mom was sobbing.  My Dad never came home, because he died that day.  June 26, 1979, became the Day My World Changed Forever. The next several months were scary.  I feared my mom would die, too, because I now knew that life was unpredictable and unfair.  I had nightmare about body parts and ghosts. I was afraid all the time.
But life, it continues for those still breathing. I played with my friends, played with my toys and danced in our living room with my sisters. My family talked about my Dad and how we all missed him. Most importantly, I believe, we all returned to laughing. We laughed at TV and when we spilled things, we laughed at all the little things and in the laughter we let go of some of our pain.
I remember my Daddy. I remember a man who colored with me and made all the animals on the side of the Playdoh box. I remember a man who allowed me to be naughty and ride my big-wheel barefoot. I remember a Dad who hugged me. I remember how he often carried me on his shoulders. I can still hear his voice. I think when we love someone, we love the sound of their voice.

What I learned to remember was much for the six years we were together and it is all good. I think that’s because my family all learned to quickly return to laughing, which helped us let go of the pain and lock in on the good times. We never stopped talking about him and loving him. I know some day I will see him again, but until then I smile when I think of him and the gift he was to me.

Closed Doors

For as long as I can remember, people have said that when God closes a door he opens a window.  This saying never fails to leave me with an uncomfortable feeling inside.  First, I don’t think God walks around closing doors here on Earth.  Isn’t that what our free will is?  Don’t we yank on door knobs, slam doors shut and even rip them off their hinges in our completely mad humanness?

Secondly, the saying always seems to imply that we must walk away from the door and go to another door or window.  There is never any talk of returning to it later.  The door isn’t shredded, it still exists. So let’s try this: Think of someone or of an activity you used to have in your life that isn’t present any longer; a closed door, if you will. Now close your eyes and count to ten while thinking of that person or experience. Now imagine yourself returning to that door.  Would you like to knock? Would you like to see if the doorknob turns?

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I believe that people and experiences can return to be important in our lives again, but only if we stop thinking of the doors as shredded when they are possibly only closed for a time.

Music not Everyone Hears

The other day I read a quote by Nietzsche: “And those who were seen dancing were thought to be insane by those who could not hear the music.”

My first thought was “Yes. That’s it!”.  That’s one of the fundamental problems we humans have– we so often have to experience (see, hear, feel) something for ourselves in order to believe it exists.  Tragically, that goes against how we are designed.  We seem to realize that it’s healthy to encourage children to use their imaginations but we criticize and shun people who dance when others can’t hear the music.

Why?

Is it because we fear feeling alone?  Do we fear not being on the same exact page so much that we avoid those who can enjoy dancing to music we can not hear? We would rather think them mad than be willing to smile as they romp, to even misstep as we try to join Image

them?

Challenge thought: Tomorrow, at any point in the day, alone or surrounded by many, dance to music you hear for at least 10 seconds.

Tell me, did it make you smile?