It’s Valentine’s Day, and I was all ready to spend the day feeling sorry for myself; this being the first Valentine’s Day since my spouse of 42 years, Phil, passed away, but I can’t do it. I have way too many friends to ever feel sorry for myself. I’m not sure how this happened. As I’ve mentioned before, I was a shy, awkward, self-conscious child which did not make me a friend magnet, but beginning in high school, I began collecting priceless friends, who remain my friends to this (Valentine’s) Day.
Beginning with my best (she is not only my best friend, she is the gold-standard best of the best) friend Shari, to my newest friends who accompanied me to the Escape Room yesterday, my friends are my most valuable treasure. So on this holiday that celebrates love, I do not feel left out; I feel immersed.
Love is my very favorite thing. I love my children and grandchildren. I love my friends. I love my cat. I love my neighbors. I love nature and the out-of-doors. I love learning. I love British television. I love my 2001 Toyota Camry. Are you starting to see a pattern here? Love is one of those great things, that the more you give, the more you get.
When I was working, I was asked to put together a presentation on empathy. We were experiencing some workplace discontent (hard to believe) and as a “transformational coach” I was called upon to try to help (that they would call on me for help, lends credence to how desperate the situation was). Thinking back, I may have offered to help. Anyway, in the spirit of “let’s all just get along” I got to work on a presentation. I decided that “putting yourself in another’s shoes” was very similar to “treating other people the way you want to be treated” so this theme was heavily relied upon in the presentation. The organization I worked with was continually stressing their reliance on numbers and data so I ended my presentation with ∞ > 1. My mathematical conclusion was that if each of us only cares for ourself, we each will have only one person caring for us. If we each care for every other person we come into contact with, we’re creating a current of caring enabling the possibility of an infinite number of persons caring for each other. My theory was that this was good because ∞ > 1. At the end of the presentation, many individuals in the room had blank expressions on their faces, so I passed around cookies and everyone was happy.
Cookies brings me back to Valentine’s Day (I always give my children’s families plates of homemade cookies for Valentine’s Day). I not only get by, I thrive, with the love of my family, cat, and friends: Shari and sisters, Terry, Jeri, Andrea, JJ, Liz, Mela, Ronnie, Eileen, Carolyn, Paula, Linda, and so many more (some I haven’t even met yet). Thank you and Happy Valentine’s Day!