This I Believe

Melissa - Croton on Hudson, New York
Entered on April 21, 2006
Age Group: 50 - 65
Themes: family, love
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Being born and bred in Ohio and one of 8 kids, I had no choice but to share as I grew up. I’m good at that, well, except food. I mean, I never got a whole piece of anything. Now that I’m all grown up, I can have a whole piece of anything I want! Sharing food was not the only lesson learned in a full house that shaped my belief system. Now, I believe in sharing on a broader level. Sharing the journey of what it means to be human. I believe in sharing conversation, life events, thoughts, ideas, lessons learned. I honestly and truly believe it is of vital importance to know why we are here in an effort to make sense of all the confusion.

I believe we should not be afraid to share our pain. None of us is really ever alone. We all hurt from time to time and get frightened. If we weren’t so afraid to speak about all this stuff, maybe it would make things easier for all of us. There is a release once you SAY it – get it OUT. You’re not so scared, it doesn’t hurt as much and then you discover YOU REALLY ARE NOT ALONE. All the joy should be shared too, all the wonderful UP feelings in life. You know, people walk into our lives and they can have a major impact on us and then, they can simply disappear or worse yet, be taken away. I believe we should tell a person when we care about them, when they have touched our hearts. Let a person know when they are special. Give back the gift they have given us; we may never have the chance again.

And something else; it doesn’t cost a single penny to be kind, to offer an ear, to listen and confirm a person’s feelings – validation. Why do so many of us humans get so hung up on how we are different? Why not focus on how we are all alike, how we are all connected? We are you know; connected and not just to each other, to everything – EVERYTHING.

I love to hear people laugh, ever since I was a kid. I used to be really silly and loved to tell jokes all the time. I carried a list in my wallet. I’d do anything to make my sister laugh cuz she had such a good laugh. Wet spaghetti noodles in her bed, bouncing rubber spiders on her in the dark, and reciting that list of silly old jokes. I believe in sharing lots and lots of laughter.

Being around all my little nieces and nephews makes me realize how sweet and innocent we all were at one time. I believe that big people should find ways to be innocent again; uncluttered and uncontrived; honest and truthful. It’s hard to live that way sometimes, but I think I’ll keep trying.

Now, I know this is going to sound REALLY corny, but I honestly believe that EVERYTHING comes down to a simple four-letter word. Yes, L-O-V-E; finding it, seeing it, feeling it; SHARING it. And not just romantic love, but the love deep within each and every single one of us – love for what we DO, what we SEE, what we HEAR, what we TASTE, what we TOUCH, what we DISCOVER, what we CREATE, what we DREAM. What if we could all incorporate this into our every day living? What if we could find a LOVING thing in each moment life brought us? For example; imagine riding the E train at rush hour and getting shoved into some big old heavy-set smelly guy with filthy hair and horribly bad breathe! Stop and think; what might his troubles be? In that moment, what LOVING thing could be thought, done or spoken? Perhaps he is our lesson of kindness, our opportunity to share a little L-O-V-E for the day, or least for the moment.