Everyone Has A Village

So in one of the more inspirational websites I follow, there was a story about a widower with 2 small children who was in a doctor’s waiting room when one of the doctor’s employees overheard him talking about his wife’s death and how much of a struggle it had been for him and his kids, to the point where they sometimes had to sleep in his car because of their financial issues. The employee decided to reach out to everyone she knew, both personally and on social media, to try to bring some happiness to this family and received an astonishing amount of both money and donations ranging from toys to clothes to food to gift cards. When she was interviewed by this website she said that it only takes one person to do something like this and asked herself why shouldn’t she be that person. Everyone has a village, she said.

And that simple sentence resonated with me because – whether we are conscious of it or not – we all do have a village. It has become a cliché to say that it takes a village to raise a child but I believe that – for all of us – it takes a village to live your life.

I know we all have examples of who comprises our village. For most of us, it’s our family. Your parents, your siblings, your children. I am blessed to have the most supportive mother and to have had my father, my hero for 57 years. My parents have been my wings when my own were broken by heartache and heartbreak and loss and betrayal. I have sisters who have shared their grace with me when I had none of my own, who make me laugh and sometimes cry when we talk about our childhood and the experiences we shared and the silly things my Dad would do or say.

I have cousins on both sides of my family who are extraordinarily kind to me. My Burke cousins took us all in the holidays after my darling Dad died because they knew how awful it would be that year, to try to pretend in my parents’ house that everything was the same. They are strong and brave and powerful and are always there to lend an ear when having a sympathetic voice on the phone is what you really need. My Vernola cousins always include my great kid and me in their Thanksgiving feast and make me ever so thankful that I have been blessed to be related to them.

My best man has made me laugh like no other for over 40 years and made my Dad laugh too anytime they were together. He drove hours the night of my Dad’s funeral just to be able to spend a few minutes with us while we were grieving so deeply. He has gone out of his way to offer friendly advice and a big brother approach to my great kid. And when I struggled mightily recently, he and his extraordinary wife lifted me up with an act of kindness that still makes me weep with humility.

My high school friends are women who all have their own accomplishments, challenges, struggles and issues but there has never been a time in the past few years that they have not been there for me. Whether it’s having dinner one-on-one with one of them or going to a group lunch and sharing our stories, both from high school and present day, they are a community I am proud to be a charter member of. When we pray together, as we do every week, I can really feel the power of their prayers for whatever our needs are that week. When I’ve gone through hard times, they reach out to me privately to check in, to reassure, to ask what they can do to help. When I least expect it, they send me notes of encouragement or tell me how proud they are of me or compliment me on something I’ve written or said or done. And when the bottom was falling out of my world in the not-so-long-ago past, they rallied around me in a way that was so extraordinarily kind and generous and compassionate that it made me want to be the person that they think I am. They saved me and I hope they know that.

There are other people too, people I don’t always keep in touch with or see as often as I would like but who are an integral part of my village. People like Josh and Jamie and Angel who were and are there for me should I need them. There are former colleagues like Miss Deborah and Dawn and Patrick and Liza (and my late, great friend Georgia) who still keep in touch even though our professional paths have not crossed for years. There are people I’ve met at social events over the years who check in on me and make a point of keeping in touch which pleases me to no end.

And of course there is my great kid who thinks nothing of calling me at 3:00 am when he needs my advice or counsel or just someone to listen and tell him he is loved beyond measure. He makes me want to make him proud  because of how he has conducted his own life. The generosity of spirit he has is astonishing. He is the man who flew across the country on a moment’s notice when my mom had a difficult medical procedure and stayed a week longer than he’d planned so he could take care of her after she’d come home. He is the friend who is loyal and generous, the person who works hard at his job because he takes such pride in doing an honest day’s work. He is that person who is stronger than anyone his age should have to be and he has taken the lessons he’s learned and used them to grow and excel. He is the boy whose birth, whose life, whose story has changed me and made me a better person in every possible way. He is the center of my village of people.

There are people for whom believing they are a valuable part of someone’s life can be hard. Perhaps it is that we tend to downplay our own value or the part that we play in someone else’s story. And too often while we may think our friends and family know how much we appreciate their gestures, their words, their gift of love or friendship, we forget to articulate it and tell them how much they matter. And you may never know how much you matter to someone, how important your presence is, how crucial you are to their story until they either tell you or you have that proverbial lightbulb moment. 2016 has been a year of lightbulb moments for me and I am so grateful that so many people in my village let me know that I was part of their village too. And their words, their thoughts, their prayers, their kindnesses are the greatest gifts of all. We are all a part of someone’s village and that is a privilege and honor not afforded to everyone. For that, I am most grateful.


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So some of you may recall that I have shared, although not at length because it is still an open and painful wound, that the love of my life died after a very brief illness less than 2 weeks before my darling Dad died. We did not live near each other and all of this had happened so fast, happened at the same time as my Dad was coming to the end of his life, so that I did not get to see him before he left this world. And so for all of this time, more than five years now, I have compartmentalized his loss and what it means for me, tucking it away into a corner of my heart that I kept closed off. It was easier for a long time to just think that fate had conspired to keep us apart than to deal with the cold reality of what had really happened. A good man, a kind and smart and loving man, a gentle soul with a gift of being able to weave his words into a story that you never forgot. The man I loved like no other was gone but I couldn’t, I wouldn’t, I didn’t deal with it. I still don’t accept it. I wish I could. I can’t.

And in all this time I had never dreamed about him even once.  He was always with me and I think about him every day. I am lucky to have photos of him, poems and letters he wrote me, the sounds of his voice on a video I watch probably more often than I should. But about two weeks ago, I finally dreamed about him.

It was a happy dream, taking place near where he lived around the holidays. We were leaving a house, getting into a car, driving to a party. I heard his voice, I saw his face, I knew he was really with me. And when I woke the next morning, I wasn’t sad. I was peaceful and realized that he – like my Dad, like so many others I have lost along the way – is truly immortal.

When I hear The Beatles sing Till There Was You, I know he is immortal because there was no one before or since like him. When I hear those words – that there was love all around but I never heard it singing till there as you – I know he still lives in my heart, is still a presence in my soul, is still alive in my mind. He is immortal.

When I see my great kid put others before himself and champion the underdogs of the world, to stand up for what he believes in, to wear my Dad’s Miraculous Medal for a long time and then give it to me when he left for school and I was going through a bad stretch, telling me that he knew I needed it more than he did, I know my Dad is immortal.

When I visit my Burke cousins and I see their hands, which are Burke hands, hands that are scarred from working hard and making do and comforting their children, what I see are my father’s hands and – when I do – I know my Dad is immortal.

When my sister helped me out, unasked, at a time when my fortunes were low and my prospects even lower, I knew that she is doing what my Mom does and has always done – helped without question, without condemnation, without criticism and that she is making my Mom immortal now. My Mom has set the bar so very high with her compassion and support and generosity and kindness and that lives on and always will in my sister.

I know that all of you have immortality in your life. We need just to gaze around and see it every day. You look in your children’s eyes and see your parents. You cook a meal based on your grandmother’s recipe. You sing the songs that your parents grew up listening to. You see a gesture, experience a moment, hear a word and know that it is your loved one manifesting himself or herself and remaining immortal to all those who they loved.

I try to live a good life every day, although some days it’s more challenging than others. I believe in fairness and kindness, gratitude and compassion, appreciation for those who have helped me and sadness for those who have not been as fortunate as I. I have been blessed many times over with so much more than I deserve. I am always appreciative when someone takes the time to say something nice, thank me for something I may have said or done, go out of their way to look out for me when I wander too far off the path.

I try to pay all of these kindnesses forward. I would like, when I’m gone, to be remembered as a good friend, daughter, sister, cousin, Christian and writer but mostly as a great mom. I try every day to set a good example for my great kid, to live my life in a way that not only inspires him but makes him proud. If we can do that, if we can make that our priority no matter what, if we can remember – to quote the great Paul McCartney – that in the end the love you take is equal to the love you make, then I know that you and I will be immortal too.


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Words Are All I Have

Some of us, most of us have God-given gifts that enable us to learn more easily, run faster,  be more patient, bake a great cookie (shout-out to my sister, Barbara, and her My Kids Cookies company), teach a child, build a house, play the piano, write a love song, heal someone’s body or heart. And hopefully we are all able to be cognizant enough – or be surrounded by others who are attuned enough to us – to recognize and cultivate and use our gifts wisely so that we end up in a profession or vocation that lets us use our gifts to satisfy not only our own sense of well-being but to share it with others who can hopefully benefit from it. Because if you don’t, you could end up spending your life as the square peg in a round hole, always wondering why you don’t feel fulfilled or satisfied in what you’re doing in your personal or professional life.

From a very early age, I loved to write and – God bless them – my parents always encouraged me to do so. From the earliest thing I can remember writing (a haiku at age 8 called Lawn), I felt such satisfaction and sense of accomplishment that I was lucky enough to be sort of a wordsmith, a person who felt comfortable trying to find just the right words whether it be for a birthday card for my great kid, or a letter to the love of my life, or an e-mail asking someone for answers I felt they owed me, or these musings that so many of you are kind enough to read. And I knew that’s what I always wanted to do.

And I did, although not in an ultimately fulfilling sense. I did write in my former career, I wrote a lot. I wrote insurance policies and vendor contracts. I drafted position papers and responses to industry questions. I penned speeches and press releases. I could rewrite something that someone else had written poorly and fix it so it made sense and sailed through the cumbersome review process that all legal documents were subject to. I was prolific at that job and probably even accomplished some good with some of the things I wrote. I was paid relatively well and I liked the business of the work and the camaraderie of my fellow workers. But satisfied? No.

I left that job after many years to take on new challenges and responsibilities. I wanted to spend more time with my great kid and my parents as their lives were changing. But even though I wasn’t employed I still felt that calling, the need to put electronic pen to paper and create something. The overwhelming desire to not let that writing muscle atrophy because of lack of use. And so I started this little blog which you’re reading, writing when inspiration – or, truth be told, sometimes desperation – manifested itself. The satisfaction of writing was freeing and exhilarating. I was confident in my skills and I could only hope that occasionally some of my random thoughts would resonate. It always pleases me to no end when someone will send me a text or post a comment here or even write me an e-mail saying they liked or were inspired by what I’d written. There was no better feeling than that.

And then after my darling Dad passed away and my son had graduated from high school and was headed off to college, I decided I needed to fill my now far-too-empty days with a new vocation. I was lucky, so lucky to have been selected by the owner and editor of a start-up financial site to write a daily column about women and finances. It was beyond exhilarating. The research, the processing of thoughts and ideas into words, the fine-tuning of the words to make them accessible to all, the sheer joy of seeing my name on a byline – it was something I could only have dreamed about. And I was even more fortunate when the editor liked my work enough to ask me not only to start writing about entertainers and finance but to cover the Presidential debates and election in 2012. Finally I was doing something I truly loved and maybe even having an impact on someone’s life.

But – like all good things – it came to an end when like most start-up companies the website ran out of funding and suspended operations “temporarily”. (It’s now going on 3 years of the temporary suspension of the site; I’m starting to lose hope.)  I didn’t give up though because I knew my writing talent had gotten better the more I wrote, my research skills had been sharpened, my judgment on what would and wouldn’t resonate with people had improved. I eventually moved on to something else but writing is and always will be my passion and even if no one ever pays me again to do it, I will never stop because the process of writing, the essence of writing, the end result of writing all matter to me. It makes me proud to use the gift I have been given by God and which my parents and my son and my friends and colleagues have always encouraged me to use. It would be wrong not to.

We are often too quick to complain and too slow or too forgetful or too silly to remember to thank those who acknowledge and encourage, who lift us up and never bring us down, who hold our hands and dry our tears, who support us and believe in us when we don’t believe in ourselves. I am lucky to be given this opportunity to share my thanks for and with you. And so to quote the great Bee Gees (the author of my Dad’s favorite misheard song,  Baldheaded Woman), it’s only words and words are all I have to take your heart away. I hope I do that on occasion for you. My gratitude is with you always.

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All My Children

So if you are of a certain age (as I certainly am and so many of my friends are), you grew up and grew older with the characters of the late and lamented All My Children (and I still hate ABC for throwing this treasure of a show onto the great heap of gone-too-soon memories). Perhaps not everyone realizes that the title of the show came from a poem written by the iconic Agnes Nixon, creator and writer of more daytime shows than one can count. “The great and the least, the rich and the poor, the weak and the strong. In joy and in sorrow, in tragedy and triumph, you are all my children”.

But today we live in a world so divided and so divisive, with the threat of a boorish orange bully possibly leading our country some day. (And I’m sorry-not-sorry for my political leanings on civility and tolerance and polite behavior if they offend). Please and thank you are the exception to the rule. Do unto others as you would have others do unto you are words that seem to have less importance in our spiritual lives every day. We seem to have forgotten that we truly are all one family, all my children.

Tonight I came home from a long day at work, tired from a troubled night’s sleep and a lingering cough that has overstayed its welcome by many weeks and, as I turned the corner onto my block, I was behind the trash collectors’ truck. These hard-working guys usually come the first thing in the morning and you are likely to see people scurrying out of their houses, trash bags in tow so that they don’t miss one of our twice-weekly pickups. More than one person has told me that the trash guys come too early, either waking them up or causing them to have to make the mad dash to get their trash bag to the curb on time. I know we all have problems; an early trash pickup is not one of mine.

And in the ultimate you-can’t-win-for-losing situation,  I saw several of my neighbors who also got stuck behind the garbage truck honking and then complaining about why the trash pick-up was so late in the day, giving a hard time to both the driver and his assistant who loads the messes and garbage and yucky stuff into the truck so that we don’t have to do. I was ashamed to watch some people yelling at this guy, a guy only following orders he gets from some dispatcher somewhere else about what time to pick up at each community. This is a hard-working guy working hard at what is probably a minimum-wage job that few others would want to do. A job that I’m sure is physically difficult and done outdoors in the middle of an icy morning or a pelting rainstorm or the extreme heat of a late summer afternoon. A job you wouldn’t do; a job I wouldn’t do. But this guy does it and we all benefit from it. A guy I say thank you to when I see him because I appreciate that his job makes my life better, my surroundings more clean and more appealing.

It reminded me that these men – who I don’t know at all – are the same children of God that I am and that my great kid and my Mom are, and that my sisters, my DC girls, my Burke and Vernola cousins are. Just because someone does a job that someone else thinks is beneath them, it doesn’t devalue the work that they do, the service they provide, the job that helps us all. We all need to take ourselves to task and remember that work – whatever kind – is valuable and should be appreciated. That politeness and gratitude and acknowledgment of a job well done (an “attaboy” as my darling Mom likes to say) are things to aspire to. That a kind word can be the lifeline to someone whose day has been a mess. That you reap what you sow. That what goes around comes around. That everyone matters.

And that we are all God’s children.




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I Thought There Would Be More

So some of you may know how much my great kid and I love the movie “Boyhood”. It resonates so deeply with us because it is, in essence, our own story to a large extent. A single mother raising a son, a mother who makes many (too many?) mistakes but is always trying to make decisions that she thinks and hopes will propel her and her son forward to a better, kinder, less stressful life. The life she faces as a single woman having to be both mother and father and guide her son while praying he learns from her mistakes is one I have lived for 17 years now. The movie that we still weep over every time either one of us hears the heartbreaking words that the great Patricia Arquette says to her son as he is packing up his car and going off to college: I thought there would be more.

This is probably the last summer my son and I will have together living in the same house as he is headed off this fall to his final year of college and then onto the path that will lead him hopefully to an enriching and rewarding life. I’ve been blessed, so blessed to have 23 summers with him here at home and it’s hard for me to imagine that it has gone by so quickly with no chance to make it last longer. It’s not fair to my boy to not let him explore and conquer, try and fail and succeed, fall in and out of love, grow and learn and live his own life. But he too (I think) wishes there would still be more.

I thought there would be more chances for us to head down to the boardwalk at the Jersey Shore in the dead of winter and walk and talk and watch the waves and, no matter how cold, get an ice cream cone before we got back in the car. I thought there would be more times to sit in a movie theater and watch a film we both loved – or hated – and talk about it over dinner, hash out the plot, critique it, recommend it, and sometimes go back and see it again. I thought there would be more days when he needed my help more than he does now. I thought there would be more chances to do all those routine things you do with your kids and don’t realize how precious they were until your kids are grown and the chances are gone. I know he needs to live his own life and not make sure mine is running smoothly but is it wrong to want to slow down time, turn back the clock, relive those precious moments, hours, days?

I thought there would be more days with my Dad before he left us, more chances for me to tell him how much I loved him and how much I appreciated all the times he worked 3 jobs to keep us all warm and safe and well-fed. I thought I would have one more day to thank him for spending every waking moment with us when we were kids, a fact my Mom always reminds me of when she tells me that my Dad would always say the happiest times of his life were when we were kids and he could be with us any chance he had.

I thought there would be more time with the love of my life, a man who died a mere 2 weeks before my Dad did. I thought that because we wished for a future together, it would happen. I thought that pain and suffering and hurt couldn’t touch us. I was wrong.

I thought there would be more time to be carefree and not be troubled by bills, debts, missed opportunities, broken hearts, hurt feelings, fear of the unknown, fear of the known. I thought I would have more times to say I’m sorry, to be less stubborn and more forgiving, to ask for a second (and sometimes a third or fourth) chance, to fix the unfixable.

I thought there would be more time to pursue what I really love to do, which is write (and I am ever so grateful to those of you who read these musings and always say such kind things to me). The satisfaction of writing is enormous and fulfilling; making a living at it (as I did for a brief while) was even more so.

I thought there would be more time to recover from the still-so-painful betrayals of 2 people I trusted (foolishly, as it turns out) and more time to try to rebuild, repair, recover. Maybe there still is but some days that seems like a moving target that I’m not even close to hitting.

But despite all of what I wish there could be more of, I am beyond grateful that my clock is still running, my determination is strong (and, with the help of some unbelievably loyal friends, getting stronger), my hope that a better future is still in front of me is strong. My desire to close the doors to my past, to turn the page, to let someone mend my broken heart, to trust people again, to cherish every moment I have with my son and my Mom and my sisters and my Burke cousins and my DC girls and my best man and my Florida friends and all of the angels God has placed in my life is a flickering flame that cannot be extinguished by what cannot be undone.

I thought there would be more. I hope there will be more. I pray that you will all come along for that journey with me because I couldn’t have come this far without the part, great or small, that all of you have played.

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Letting Go

So we’re all given the same 60 minutes an hour, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to live our lives. That time is a precious commodity, a gift that not enough of us value as dearly as we should. A moment wasted never returns. And sometimes those wasted moments turn into days and weeks and years and maybe even lifetimes. That’s a lot of time to spend your energy on.

Our lives don’t come with rewind buttons and – even if they did – we would probably go back to the bad hairdo and platform shoe days of our high school years and make better fashion and makeup choices. (Why oh why did someone not tell me that blue frosted eyeshadow was not a good idea? Oh wait. My Mom did. Sorry, Mom, for not listening). But rewinding and revisiting and reimagining and replaying those moments, those actions, those choices, those decisions can be all-consuming and stop us from moving forward. Or at least slow us down enough to create our own personal traffic jam.

Sometimes we can feel exhausted even when we’re not tired and it’s an emotional exhaustion brought on by worry and fretting and thinking “If only I had . . ” or “Why didn’t I . . ” or “What was I thinking when I . . ” (I suspect you all have your own versions of these questions without answers that can play in an endless loop in your brain, always lurking back there in the shadows, never quite going away but just present enough to inhabit a corner of your mind all the time). It’s the craziness we all pretend we’re not dealing with. But we all do even if no one owns up to it.

No one ever judges us as harshly as we judge ourselves. (But if someone does, please remove that person from your orbit immediately. You don’t need their negative energy). We never stop second-guessing about a decision made that didn’t turn out as we hoped. We point the finger of blame at ourself when oftentimes it’s another who has messed up our plans, derailed our future, sabotaged our dreams, rented space in our head they don’t deserve to occupy.

As women, we’re told to empower ourselves. We’re given so many opportunities to do that, opportunities our mothers and grandmothers didn’t have. We are the people who do it all, or at least think we can. We mother our children, we take care of our parents (if we’re blessed enough to still have them), we listen to our friends’ tales, we shoulder the burden of someone else’s troubles. We work until we think we can’t work a moment longer, and then we work some more. We balance relationships, checkbooks, schedules. We function on too little sleep, too much caffeine, too many worries. We go on because we have to. We are powerful and – sometimes, no matter how hard we try – we are powerless.

But it all takes a lot of energy, sometimes too much energy. Energy is an ever-diminishing resource that we know – or should know when we’re thinking clearly – must be replenished. Sleep and food and water, of course, help. But we need to boost our spiritual energy too. The support of friends, the kind word that you didn’t know you needed until someone says it. The person who tells you that you’ve done a good job or handled a situation well or had their back when they need it. The team we all assemble that not only supports us but protects us when we need it.

So let’s focus on eliminating the things that drain our positive energy and block the things that push negative energy onto us. Surround yourself with good and kind people (and please make sure you’re one of those people yourself). Watch a good movie and laugh or cry at the plot. Re-read your favorite book. Treat yourself to something that will make you smile. Help someone who needs it. Accept help from someone who offers it. Sleep more. Worry less (or at least try to worry less). Be your own advocate. Have some ice cream. Hug your kid. Thank your parents. Say please and thank you. Let someone love you. Stop being afraid. Pick up the phone and call someone you miss. Dream big, dream bigger. Smile. Pray. Let go. Let God. All is well.

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Don’t Be That Person

So recently I went to my nail salon for a little TLC. It was a busy Saturday and the salon seemed atypically crowded. And for those of you who’ve ever had to wait for an appointment, you know what happens. If the first person of the day is late getting to their appointment, then your nail tech or hairdresser or dentist or doctor will be running late all day through no fault of their own. In the big scheme of things, it shouldn’t be a big thing at all. Exceptions, of course, do happen but a few minutes wait here or there is not that big a deal. Or so I thought.

I had to wait about 10 minutes past my scheduled appointment so I sat and read my favorite book of all time on my Kindle (it’s The Wind in the Willows for anyone who wants to read a book that has lifted me and inspired me since I was 10 years old). I actually enjoyed those few minutes I had gained, because I had been racing around all morning trying to accomplish all that we inevitably have to squeeze in on the weekend because our weekdays are so filled with too much work, too many chores, too many obligations. This was found time so I didn’t mind the wait at all. The pleasure I got from reading about my favorite characters far outweighed the minor inconvenience of having to wait.

And then some woman I didn’t know came in and found out she had to wait a few minutes and started making a very loud fuss. “What exactly is the problem?” she kept saying to the young  women at the front desk. She wasn’t in the mood to hear their explanation nor apologies and just kept carrying on. It was uncomfortable to listen to and I felt badly for the people not only on the receiving end of her tirade but the nail tech who inevitably would hear the complaints when the customer finally was seated at her station. And all I could think was don’t be that person.

I don’t presume to speak for anyone or everyone but I know I have been that person on more than one occasion and I suspect many others may have been too. We are presented – willingly or not – with an inconvenience, a small delay, a promise unkept, a delay not anticipated, a wrinkle in our otherwise planned – or, truth be told – over planned day and we react badly. We make the proverbial mountain out of the molehill. Our outrage or upset is usually so out of proportion to what has happened that in retrospect we should be shaking our heads at how we reacted. But how many of us do? How may of us have become numb to how our reactions are perceived by others? How many of us fail to realize the impression we leave on others, the example we set for our children, the bubble we encase ourselves in where only our feelings, our time, our priorities matter?

For all the good technology does us, the fact is that we lived in a speeded-up world today, so different from the world I grew up in. We expect instantaneous responses to our texts, we send e-mails and get annoyed when we have to wait a day to hear back from the person on the receiving end. We order our clothes, our food, our books online because it’s faster and saving time matters so much to us. And time is a valuable commodity; I get it. But is it more important than the impact your actions and words have on someone when you behave badly because you’ve made your time a more valuable commodity than their feelings?

We have less and less personal contact with people – or so it seems to me – since we communicate so much via electronic means. We forget that words on a screen can hurt someone, mostly because we don’t have to assume the responsibility of seeing a person’s reactions to how we act or speak. We have, I’m afraid, become numb to the lack of civility. It has become far too often routine behavior, if not encouraged then tolerated. And because of this some of us have forgotten that being rude or disrespectful or inconsiderate or nasty is not acceptable, whether it’s in person or online.

Life is short and we only get one shot at it. Life gets even shorter when you’re my age and you realize that time is going by faster and faster each day. We have the opportunity, the chance, the gift every day to not overreact, to put things in perspective, to think before we speak, to not make everything into a thing. We can take a pause, put ourselves in the other person’s place, think before we speak and make a decision to not harm others with our impatience, our attitude, our sense of entitlement, our words. I don’t want someone’s memory of me after I’m gone to be that I was the person who lost her temper over the smallest and silliest of things, things that won’t matter in an hour, a day, a week. I don’t want to be remembered as someone who was unkind or cared less about others than she did about herself. I don’t want my life’s legacy to be that I was that person. I’m better than that and so are you all.

Don’t be that person.




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