“If I could give you one gift, I would give you the ability to see yourself as I see you, so you could see how truly special you are.”
I spent the latter half of my day today with a good friend of mine that is leaving for Peru on Wednesday to start a new job. I have to admit, I cried as I was driving away. I had been wondering today what my quote would be until I pulled off of her street, and then this one came to me. I can honestly use it when speaking about ALL of my friends, but, tonight, I’m using it for Amy.
I am so proud of her for following her heart and her dreams and making a move that many are scared to make. It takes strength and determination to follow a dream and passion such as this. She is truly special and will always be a dear friend to me. I wish her nothing but the best as she begins this next adventure on the road of life.
My going away gift to you, my dear, is to always see yourself as I see you, so you are always reminded of how truly special you are! You inspire me! I’ll miss you, love, but am just a Skype away. So many people are about to be given the gift of you and your smile, your kindness and your beauty and I couldn’t be happier for them. Safe travels and good luck!
“You’re never fully dressed without a smile!” – Annie
I was reminded how important smiling was just yesterday on my ride home from work. My lower back was out and the weather had finally taken a toll on my sinuses, needless to say, I just wanted to be home. I was NOT smiling! But, something awesome happened while I was sitting at a stop light. I looked to my left and two friends were hugging goodbye to go their separate ways. As the one girl turned to walk down the street she had a smile from ear to ear on her face and I automatically smiled myself. Smiles are contagious! They have so much positive energy behind them and seeing this girl smiling yesterday changed my whole mood! Funny how someone you don’t even know can make your day a little brighter.
And, let’s throw two quotes into one post, “Don’t frown, because you never know when someone is falling in love with your smile.” It’s so true. A smile is part of the outfit we should all put on everyday. Don’t leave it in the closet, put it on, even when you don’t want to. Because it is so important and may just change someone’s whole day around. So, thank you, random girl on the sidewalk, for reminding me how smart that curly-haired, little red head was 🙂
“Forget the past, but remember what it taught you.”
This quote personally reminds me of one of my favorite books, The Four Agreements by Miguel Ruiz. The one agreement that I have to remind myself of on a daily basis is ‘Be Impeccable with your Word.’ Your word isn’t just what is spoken. It’s also your expressions, your actions, your attitude, what you put your belief into, self judgement and the judgment of others.
I mention this because there have been times in my past when I gossiped or said things out of pain and anger, maybe even jealousy and envy, and I wasn’t impeccable with my word. I have hurt people that I never intended to and I have beat myself up for it instead of just learning from the experience and moving on. You have to analyze and understand the root of what happened and why, sincerely apologize for it, forget about it, move on and learn from what the experience taught you. We all make mistakes, we just have to learn from them and try our best not to make the same mistake twice.
Once it has been said, done, expressed and shown to the world, you can’t take it back. You can only work to make it better and use each experience as a text book for your future. So choose your words, your actions, your expressions, your judgments wisely, because they are an extension of who you are and create the impression that others will get of you.
I suggest this book to any of you that have never read it. It’s like my little Bible. Click for a link to Amazon.com (free publicity lol):
“Strangers are just family you have yet to come to know.”
– Blue Man, The Five People you Meet in Heaven by Mitch Albom
My friends tend to laugh at me because when I meet a stranger, there is a pretty good chance we will become good friends and stay in touch, no matter where we live. But friends are more than just friends to me. Once you become my friend, I consider you family. I don’t really see the difference to be honest. Family and friends are synonymous in my mind. I have more sisters and brothers and moms and dads, than I know what to do with. The more perspectives and positive energy, the better!
I can’t help it, I genuinely like people and LOVE meeting someone new! Every person you meet has their own story and we have so much to learn from the experiences of others. I love getting to know new people and learning about where they are from, what they have done and have been through, their cultures and points of view. It is SO important to branch out of your comfort zone and meet new people. You never know what you’ll learn about yourself in the long run! So, next time you have the chance to talk to someone new, do it, you just never know what will come out of a simple hello and a smile!
’and when the night is cloudy
there is still a light that shines on me
shine until tomorrow, let it be…’
This will most likely not be the first time that the words of Paul McCartney and John Lennon will show up on this blog. That being said, I didn’t think I would use a verse from my FAVORITE song so quickly, but then a good friend of mine found comfort in the words the same way that I do, and today felt like the perfect day.
If you know me, you know I have trouble letting things go, letting them be, and you also know how important this song is to me. I think it may actually be written on my soul because I’m pretty sure the notes run through my blood. This verse in particular is my favorite. There will be dark nights, and some pain will seem so inescapable that you aren’t sure how to catch your breath, but there is always a light. Whether it be a friend, a song, a poem, a memory, maybe even a stranger, something will get you through, hold you up in a way that doesn’t make sense and remind you that if you ‘let it be’ all will work itself out in the end. There are some things, especially loss, that are simply out of our control.
“Life isn’t about finding yourself; life is about creating yourself.” – George Bernard Shaw
When I decided to move to Spain in 2006, I told my dad about this decision in an email. I knew that there was no way I could say it to his face because, if anyone could keep me from going, it would be him. So, two weeks later, when he met me in the Marshall’s parking lot (go figure, my father in a Marshall’s parking lot haha) he looked at me, realizing how important his support was, and said that he supported me. BUT, immediately following that, he asked me a question that I never understand until right now, “Is this about you ‘finding yourself’ again? Because you have to stop trying to do that.”
I said no because that’s what he wanted and needed to hear, but I was lying. I really thought that I was going to do that and, until today, I thought that is what happened over there. Not until about 5 minutes ago did I get what my father meant. I couldn’t find myself, I wasn’t lost. I was right there and I had control over who I was and my own happiness. I didn’t ‘find’ myself in Spain, I created myself, like I have continued to do day after day since then.
Life is about creating yourself. You don’t have to find who you are, you have control over the person that you become and if you reach your goals. You ‘find’ yourself within yourself. We are the only ones that have control over who we are. I work every day doing everything I can to become the best person I can. I may slip sometimes, but I will never stop moving forward with this process.
“Leave room in your busy life for those who adore you just in case you ever question your magic.” – Nancy Drew
I have been pondering all day about which quote should be my first. I’ve actually rewritten this post 5 times already, but I think this is it. This is one of the most important quotes in my books that I live by.
Less than a month ago I got to spend a long weekend away back in Georgia celebrating the marriage of my best friend. I got to spend 3 to 4 days with my oldest and best friends in this world and my mom and grandmother. Only one weekend later, an amazing group of Chicago women came together to celebrate my birthday. Then, just 2 weeks later, I was able to spend a weekend back in Knoxville, Tennessee with my college friends at my first Vol football game in years. After these three weekends with 3 separate groups of friends, I was reminded how important it is to make room for those people in life that love you for who you are and think the world of you and your friendship. The ones that hold the keys to your past, are celebrating your present and helping to create your future.
Life gets busy and things get tough and, at times, stressful, but you HAVE to surround yourself with those that love you and be reminded what happiness, true friendship and real love really are. It’s these people that help you to remember memories and moments that will live within you forever. Because, at the end of the day, everyone needs to feel loved and important. So, to all of you that I adore, thank you for being a part of my life and if you EVER question your magic, I’m just a text, email or phone call away to remind you how truly amazing and special you are!