I believe in the power of opening.
My friend and class TA, Kaitlin, thinks that people decide to be opening or closing, and that while you may alternate back and forth, people tend in one direction or the other. She told me about her grandpa, who is a major father figure in her life. She said that once he got to be around 50 or so, he decided he wanted to spend the rest of his life opening.
The man is so alive. When Kaitlin makes really delicious and thoughtful meals, he will every once in a while cry because it is just so good. He is the kind of person that will have the cashier telling him their life story by the time he is bagging his things. Even though he has recently been diagnosed with cancer and has undergone chemotherapy, he just began taking Spanish classes because he believes in the importance of being a good neighbor. Kaitlin and I were away on a long-term trip, so she called her grandfather to check in. She was so concerned initially because when she asked how he was, he was so tired. She thought it must be the chemotherapy, and was deeply sad. But no! He had been nonstop on the phone for weeks on end campaigning for Obama!
I love to talk about Kaitlin’s grandpa because through seeing how she talks about him and how much she loves him, I feel like I know him too, in and out. In the words of my dear friend Trish, he is one of those people “who makes life crackle.” I believe that these people are changing the world.
I believe that these people are changing the world more powerfully than any corrupt corporation ever could in a negative way. I believe so strongly in the power of good, and that when it comes down to it, connection by the heart is what most matters.
Opening: compassionate listening, earnest learning, strong loving, being in the present moment, trusting, breathing, radical healing.