A couple of my friends and I are doing a 10 day writing challenge. My sister Charlotte, my friend Judith, and I just finished writing ours. I loved theirs so much… I’m sharing Judith’s below (with her permission). I want to share one person’s a day during the next 10 days.
10 Things I Want to Say to 10 Different People Right Now
- “Why didn’t you admit you were wrong?” This one goes to my seventh grade teacher. She tried. Honestly, she did. But somehow till her time of teaching was over, she had no more respect from her students than she did on her first visit the year before she taught and one of her future students was butchering her name behind her back. Later, a classmate and I wrote a letter to her, apologizing for our part in how things went. She never answered. She never offered forgiveness, and she never owned any blame. In the end she lost the respect she might have gained if she had simply humbled herself enough to admit she was not perfect.
- “You can do anything if you work hard enough.” I really do not have a good reason why I have never told my students this. Maybe I have and I forget. I see these humans for 6+ hours every day for five days a week, so opportunities should not be lacking. Maybe tomorrow I will.
- “What color were your eyes?” There are some souls who never live to see the light of day. Some made their early departure from earth to heaven at the whim of a cold-hearted doctor, but there are some who were loved and wanted, and God called them anyway. This question is for one being in the latter category: one who left the darkness of his mother’s womb this past summer and entered the light of glory.
- “Things are not as important as they seem. Next week it won’t matter. Next year it won’t matter. It’s just things.” Undoubtedly there are exceptions to this rule. Even so, I wish that I could have sunk this concept into my teenage brain. Actually, I wish I could sink this into my twenty-two year old brain too. There are somethings a person must learn through life experiences and no amount of wise quotes and wonderful stories can take the place of experience.
- “You have no idea how much I have criticized you in the past, and how much I have admired you in the more recent past. Where do you get your strength? You were wiser than I believed, and I believe now that you love me more than I could have known.” Isn’t it funny how parents change in their children’s eyes? Kind of like binoculars, first clear and wonderful and everything they do is beautiful and right. Then somehow the focusing gets out of whack and everything looks blurry. Kooky. Then just when you start to panic and think that God made a huge mistake in picking out parents for you, you realize that you were the one turning the knobs wrong the whole time. And when you reverse the train of thought, things begin to be clear again.
- “How can you love me? How can I not love you more?” When I step back and look at the big picture, loving my Creator is barely an option. The only reason I am not a perfect Christian, serving him perfectly every day in every way, is because I’m human. Sometimes (way too much!) I get wrapped up in myself and my stubborn thought patterns. I forget what all loving God includes, and I wallow in earthiness. But God never stops loving. (And I also realize that God is not a person and thus does not fit in this list, technically.)
- “Seven is the perfect number.” At least it is for me when speaking of sisters. I love all six of mine. Some in different ways, perhaps, than others. But I just can not imagine doing life with any less. Seven girls in one family is way too much fun.
- “Just because you are one and not seven doesn’t mean I love you less.” Yes, only brother, you will never realize how much I looked up to you and followed you. (Well, maybe you knew I followed you.) I am so glad I have you, because how else would I keep myself bearably calm and sane in public?
- “Please forgive.” I will not say who this is for. It is for some specific people in my life who have hurt many others by holding grudges. It is also for everyone everywhere, because you and I have all been hurt, and we must forgive or else be tied to pain forever. And when we are tied to pain, we drag it around with us. We walk through other peoples’ lives dragging our pain and causing them pain that was never theirs. And our pain grows and morphs into a beast that was never meant to be ours.
- “I will always remember the last time I visited you.” I went to visit my Grandpa one day shortly before he passed away. For some reason this happy little memory never leaves me: Me: (picking up the newspaper and seeing the comics) “Do you always read the funnies?” Grandpa: (with a smirk and a chuckle) “Course I do. That’s why I’m so funny!” I’m sorry you do not understand why this is a funny happy memory, because it is one of those things that you had to be there to get it.