(by the way, it isn’t a competition anyway)
Do you remember a time when the police, firefighters, and teachers were our heroes? Do you remember a time when you saw your teacher outside of school that you were in total awe? (I thought for sure that my teachers always just lived in the classrooms they taught in, and didn’t really have any other life outside of school….). Do you remember a time when music brought people together instead of created separations? (Breakin and Breakin 2: Electric Boogaloo, anyone??). Do you remember a time when neighborhoods of all colors spent hours together with a large boom box and a piece of cardboard where everyone did their best trying to learn all the latest break dancing moves? Do you remember a time when the national anthem was played before the movie at the movie theater? Or after the TV programs shut off at night? (yes, there was a time that TV was not 24/7 young ones….)… Do you remember a time when kids had to take a Presidential Test for P.E. in school? Do you remember a time when P.E. took priority in regards to children’s health? Do you remember a time when people reached out to help one another instead of reaching for their cell phone to video during trying moments? Do you remember a time when national holiday’s were not only celebrated, but acted out? (who else dressed up as a pilgrim or an Indian every year in elementary school?), and it wasn’t in order to make fun of any culture, but to celebrate our nation’s history. Do you remember a time when history was taught, not to promote hate, but to teach us about our failures in the past, in hopes that such actions would never be repeated?
Do you remember a time when RESPECT was taught? Do you remember a time when our differences were not greater than our love for one another as Americans?
I do. And although there has always been strife in our history, I strongly believe that the point in life is to not repeat the past. It is to get better at being human as we get older as individual’s and as a nation.
Where is our humanity at the moment?
It’s Sunday. Did you laugh this weekend? Did you take time away from the busyness of weekday to-do lists? Did you let the laundry sit in the dryer an extra hour or two so you could finish watching a movie, or continue playing with your loved ones? Did you let yourself sleep in? Did you take any time to rest your brain? To rest your soul?
If the answer is no, then do it NOW. Do it today. It’s Sunday Funday and it is time for you to start taking care of YOU. The world will not fall apart if you decide to take a break from all your “must do’s” in life. They will still be there tomorrow. Take time to play today. Take time to rest. Take time to laugh. Take time to do absolutely nothing at all.
“A Sunday well spent brings a week of content” ~ Anonymous……. (this may or may not be true, but I can promise you that even if the week ahead is not full of contentment, knowing you took time today to rest and just “be” will allow you to face the week ahead refreshed and ready for it)!
A friendly love reminder from me to you.
Nice, Dallas, Bangladesh, Orlando, Brussels, Paris, San Bernadino, Syria, Turkey, Africa, and so many more places in our world hit by horrendous terrorists attacks…….my heart is heavy this morning. Another daily reminder to enjoy the moments of today my friend. Tomorrow is just never promised to any of us. xo
I have spent the last 5 days exploring a part of Texas I have never been to before. I have lived in Texas 29 years (yikes!!), and in those 29 years, I have never been to what is referred to as the “Grand Canyon of Texas”, also known as Big Bend National Park, in West Texas. Until now.
I want to point out that I left for my trek to Big Bend very early last Friday morning……. a morning that came after a terrible tragedy in a city very close to where I live…..Dallas, Texas. The night before I left for West Texas, 5 Dallas police officers where murdered by a maniacal gunman. It was devastating news on top of the ever increasing daily devastating news of inhumane treatment of people, of senseless shootings of innocent people, of hate and insanity. Let’s face it, our country and our world is hurting at the moment, and spiraling in a way that none of us have experienced in many, many years…..if ever!
Like you, I am looking for the right words to express my feelings of the state of our country and our world at the moment, but they are hard to find. I am not sure such words exist. But, even though I am in search of such words, I continue to focus on the love out there. On the good that is happening every day. I will always focus on that, and never on the worst case scenario……anyway, back to my trip to West Texas……..
As we drove to West Texas, the landscape pretty much consisted of dirt and desert. There is not much variation as you head west, so as we drove into Big Bend National Park, I pretty much expected it to be much the same. Oh how wrong I was! Yes, when you first enter the park, it is pretty much desert and cacti, but then all of a sudden, there are majestic mountains in the background that create a backdrop in the sky that makes your mouth drop. Mountains of all different shapes and sizes, with canyons and crevices just waiting to be explored. My mom was with us for this trip, and she started a game for all of us that consisted of who could find the different “faces” and “creatures” in the mountain terrain. We all laughed as we shouted out the different things we saw carved into the mountain (some we agreed with and some we just looked at that person and thought “okaaaaaayyyy……”)…. 😉 Yes, it was a good time had by all! But, it was A LOT of desert! Miles and miles of desert. Now as one who thinks the coast of Northern California is the most beautiful place on earth (I am definitely more a tall pine tree and ocean type of girl), I kept thinking to myself, “well, it’s pretty, but it is just so much the same……so much desert”, and honestly, I was thinking “what’s the big deal about Big Bend”??!!……..until we turned down the road to a place called Chisos Basin……
One turn down a road and the landscape completely changed. It turned from dry desert to lush green trees and flowering bushes. It was hard to believe that we were in the same park as before with the stark difference in landscape. I must admit, this area of the park soothed my soul much more than the desert and cacti, but together they make up this National Park that so many people put on their “bucket lists”……and now I get it. It truly is a breathtaking part of Texas.
Now, as we spent our time exploring West Texas, we had very limited cell reception. There was no daily news that we read. There was no exposure to all the political rhetoric, to all the hate, to all the senseless crimes happening. Nope. None of that. We spent 5 days pretty much in “radio silence”, and I must say…..it was REALLY nice! It also made me think how much I enjoyed the variation of the park and how disappointed I would have been if the entire park was full of desert and cacti. There just isn’t much excitement in exploring if everything looks the same! Anyone with me on this?
Then, I started thinking about all the hate happening in our world due to all the “differences” we seem to focus on. I started thinking how glad I was that we ARE all different. How absurd it is to think that our world would be better off being only desert and cacti, or only being tall pine trees and ocean. WE NEED DIFFERENT! We need different to appreciate. We need different to be knowledgeable. We need different to create excitement. We need different to learn. We need different to have experiences. We need different because being all the same is boring.
Why is this so hard for all of us to embrace? Why is different so scary? Why is different so offensive? Why is different so hateful?
Yes, I choose to look back on my last 5 days in thankfulness. Thankful that I got to experience the stark differences of West Texas’s landscape. Thankful for all the people in my life who come from so many different places in life. Thankful for so many different experiences (good and bad) that I have gone through in my life that helped create the person I am today. Yes, thankful for all of it. For knowing that different is very good. Not only very good, but needed!
I challenge you today my friend to seek out the different. Embrace the different you come across. Love the different you encounter. After all, the same of anything (people, places, landscape, things….) are so very boring!