Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Sink or float

Water not only can keep a ship afloat, but can also sink it.

Sometimes, something that is useful or essential to us is also dangerous. There are times that we rely on something or someone to carry us through situations, but an overreliance on that person or thing may be our downfall.

Understanding the dangers of relying too much on someone or something can only help us. We need to be able to do things independently (this is not to say that we can't depend on others). We need to be able to do things without help if necessary. At the same time, though, we also need to be able to rely on others or objects to carry us through when we most need support.

Friday, April 1, 2011

Facing happiness

Your happiness is before you, not behind you! Cherish it. I have met people who greet the days that lie before them with the greatest of melancholy, with regrets and sorrow that the future would never be just as good as what they experienced in the past. It's easy to get lost in the memories of yesterday, thinking of how great things were, and of how happy one was then. But how do you know that tomorrow will not bring a time that is happier? If we all clung to moments--such as the the times we spent with a former lover or close friend that we have lost (perhaps through a break-up or a slow fade-away), we'd close our hearts and souls to the possibilities of the future. If we keep looking backwards, we never may be entirely open to new possibilities. Each of those possibilities has the ability to bring greater happiness than we've ever known.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011


What great things would you attempt if you knew you could not fail.
All too often, we have great ideas. And many times, the insecurities we have, the self-doubts we have about bringing those ideas to fruition get in the way.

Imagine if someone dreamed the airplane, and didn't work on creating it. Imagine if Ford dreamt a car and didn't create it. So much of what we have in this world started as an idea. But just think of how many of these crazy inventions or theories came about because someone believed hard enough, or thought to himself--"just maybe--just maybe--this is true?" Without that nagging thought tugging in the back of your head--or just by ignoring that little voice that tells you are wrong or just plain crazy...maybe you'll stumble upon greatness.

Maybe you'll create masterpieces, just like van Gogh. Maybe you'll be a scientist who refused to back down, just like Frederick Banting.

Maybe you just didn't give up on something you believed in with all your heart, like Anne Sullivan. Or Temple Grandin's mother. Or my parents. My parents were often told that what they were attempting was impossible, and that I wouldn't be able to speak, much less hear. Yet, they defied popular opinion and here I am, a product of that chance, that opportunity. I can't imagine my life being any other way, and it's all because my parents just simply didn't give up.

Out of all the possibilities out there, how many were not brought to life?

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Usual gifts

You will soon receive an usual gift freely given. Accept!

Usual gift? When I first read this fortune, I thought it said unusual gift, so my mind wondered what I could soon be receiving. It wouldn't be that giant rearview mirror that I received at a white elephant swap before Christmas?

The rearview mirror is still in the box. I gave it to my dad, though. Unusual gift, yes.

But a usual gift? I think that usual gifts tend to blend and fade into my memory, even if I do accept them graciously. However, the unusual gifts I do not forget (this includes the giant rearview mirror, a Hello Kitty wafflemaker (given by my boyfriend), a set of ponytail holders and hair clips (I have short hair, mind you), and a pair of sparkly purple panties given by my mom's friend at an annual Christmas gathering of mostly middle-aged family friends--mortifying...)

Wednesday, July 28, 2010


Keep it simple. The more you say, the less people remember.

How true that what we say is what stays in people's minds. The overcomplication of words is difficult to remember, and it's just better to get back to basics. Say what you need to say--and my boyfriend tends to ramble on--a side effect is that sometimes people tune out if things go on too long, if there's too much talking.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Whatever is worth doing at all, is worth doing well.

As a child, my parents always told me that grades didn't matter, as long as I tried my best. I was an honors student, and while I got paid a few dollars for each "A" that I earned in school, I liked doing well better.

My senior year of high school, I got my first "C" in an academic subject (physics). My parents' reaction was not what I expected. I had expected my parents to be upset (after all, my dad is just fantastic at math and science, and he tried to help me out)--"Did you try?" and I did, even though I was completely confused by the topic and the way the material was taught. My parents told me that it was fine because I worked hard to understand the material and did my best, even if it didn't look that way on my report card.

Thursday, July 15, 2010


If a true sense of value is to be yours it must come through service.
On my honor I will try
To serve God and my country
To help people at all times
And to live by the Girl Scout Law
Of course, it's been years since I was a Girl Scout (I made it as far as Cadette), so I had to look up the Girl Scout Law. But I still remember holding up three fingers and reciting this at the beginning of each Troop meeting. As a Girl Scout, we earned badges that we later sewed onto our vests or sashes. I didn't make it very far; I joined Girl Scouts because my friends were in my Troop, and I had a lot of fun.
That changed in my last year of Girl Scouts. Because many girls quit Girl Scouts or found that they wanted to focus their time on other activities, our Troop was much smaller, so we merged with another local Troop. This other Troop had a leader who was all about earning badges and selling many cookies, and at that point when it became work and about the importance of earning badges rather than learning about oneself or spending time doing things that were important to you, Girl Scouts was no longer fun. So I dropped out after that year (must have been 7th or 8th grade).
But here's the thing: after I left Girl Scouts, I was still quite involved in a lot of activities, volunteering my time with different organizations that focused on those in need, and I didn't need a badge to prove that I was worthy of that activity. I felt good about myself and felt that I was doing something worthwhile. For many years, I did volunteer work, and although right now my time has been pretty tied up, I still feel pretty good when I do something for someone else. I feel this way, because I'm doing something because it's important to me, and not because I have to earn a badge or proof to show that I did something.
That feeling is more meaningful than the Girl Scout badges, in my opinion.