Happy Friday my dear friends, we have survived yet another week like the Warriors that we are! We zigged and we zagged, we lost some battles and won others. No matter how daunting or exhausting things got, we put one foot in front of the other and kept on pushing through. Here we stand, on the cusp of a well deserved break (unless you work weekends, then I offer my deepest apologies, feel free to send curses my way for unintentionally bringing it up. Please save this and read it when your own weekend is set to begin and revel in the fact that I will probably be at work at that time).
You deserve to kick up your feet, lean back and take a long sip from your favorite beverage. You have earned this, and damn, does it feel good. For once just forget about the trials and tribulations of your daily life, the to-do list you’ve written, the frustrations of the past week- right now is about living in this one moment, something we do far too little of, I am afraid. It is all too easy to wish our lives away, waiting for the next best thing. I am just as guilty as any other.
It is no secret that we live in a tumultuous world right now, the daily frustrations are hard to escape. And if you are anything like me, that constant barrage of negativity finds a way to seep into your soul like rain through a sweatshirt. It leaves you cold and exhausted. So this Friday, I think we owe it to ourselves to take a different angle. We live in a tumultuous world, true; but if you start looking in the right places, you will see the beauty hidden amidst the turmoil.
I live for small joys, tiny moments of peace and hope that sustain the soul and refresh the spirit. I wouldn’t be able to survive doing what I do, surrounded by the things that I hear without this little trait that reminds me to look for the simple joys. They give me hope in a world that I don’t always understand, in a life that does not always understand me.
Another storm hit my town; harsh winds and freezing rain peppered us all night, leaving our roads slick and shiny this morning, covered in a layer of ice that did not want to give up its new residence. It wasn’t until I made it out to Ellie (that would be my car, I like to name inanimate objects), that I remembered I lent my ice scraper to my fiancé during the last winter storm- and he broke it (no blame cast, just a fact). Frustrated at the prospect of being forced to wait for the ice to melt off my windshield, someone presented me with a small act of kindness in the form of their spatula. It worked surprisingly well at scraping the frozen sheet off my car, once I got over feeling silly weilding cooking utensils at my 3,000 lb vehicle like a witch with her magic wand. I thanked them, and was able to slowly creep down the road on my way to work- I even managed to make it in on time and get a decent parking spot (yay for little victories)!
You see, these small acts of kindness are what tie us together, they are the things that bring back our humanity in a society where we find ourselves far too emboldened to demean one other from the safety of our social media screens. All it took to change my day and my mood was a spatula- a regular, plastic cooking utensil. Grand and profound gestures are not always required when real people are at stake. Spreading joy is what will bring us back to our roots, remind us of the good that resides in us all. We cannot categorize one another as good and evil, friend and foe- when there is so much gray area in terms of real flesh and blood people. These smalls kindnesses can be found in the most mundane details of life. Even something as simple as asking a co-worker if they’re feeling better will remind them that someone cared enough to worry about them.
The other day someone paid for my coffee at the drive-thru when I was just having one of those mornings. So I paid it forward and hoped the red truck behind me would find a smile to light up the beginning of their day, just as I did. When I got to work last week there was a feather and a flower sitting on my desk- no note, no one running in asking if I saw it. Just a feather and a flower that left me with a sense of peace. When my sister was out standing on a crowded street in the rain, a stranger came over and held their umbrella over her head simply because she looked cold. The other day a Judge that I work with came to my desk to personally shake my hand and thank mefor publicly standing up for a cause that deeply impacts his life and the lives of his family members, he said it meant a lot to know that it mattered to someone. Last weekend my mom was in a car accident, and the other driver made a point to find a blanket from his car to wrap around her because she couldn’t stop shivering. After his car was towed from the scene, my mom was able to drive him home, surprising even the police officers who responded. Kindness attracts kindness, one smile will be contagious to those who receive it.
People seem to thrive on contention and frustration, some get satisfaction in the fight, in the struggle, in slashing at their opponents. There are time in our lives when we are all guilty of this- it is universal. But that does not have to be our driving force if we do not wish it. Stand for kindness, embody the values you wish to see in this world. There is a time to gear up for the battle and fight. But it is not all the time.
So this Friday, to celebrate the end of another crazy week, find the joys amidst the chaos. In a world that is constantly moving, you deserve a chance to sit still. You’ve fought like hell this week, take a break, remember the joys that sustain you, revitalize your soul. Have a beautiful weekend my friends, don’t forget to look for the sunshine in spite of the clouds.