Friday, June 26, 2009

Life Lessons

Two girlfriends and I went to see Kathy Griffin last night. Her act is like gossiping with a catty friend, except with lots more f-bombs and references to Bravo TV shows.

In all actuality, we probably would have got more of the jokes had we known the ins and outs of the "Real Housewives," franchise. Judging from the hoots from the audience, by not watching this show, we have deprived ourselves big time. (Disclaimer: I did see the season finale of the New Jersey addition, and it's easy to see why this series would attract those with...flamboyant tastes.)

As is often the case, I enjoyed spending time with my girlfriends more than the actual event. We had a long drive home to talk about all sorts of things, and since we all have children, we talked about them once or twice. OKAY, we talked about them ALL THE TIME. Occupational hazard, I guess.

My friend Kristen and her husband recently attended a wedding in Bermuda, and got all their paperwork together before leaving the boys with her parents for the week. Included in the paperwork was the "God Forbid," letter---a letter to her sons in the event of her death. In the letter, she detailed all the life lessons and guiding principles she hoped to pass on to her boys. Just in case.

She said that the letter wrote itself, and she was glad to have done it. I think it's a fantastic idea.

Like her, I hope that my boys never need to read such a letter until they are much, much, much older. I also hope that the letter would simply confirm all that they witnessed in my words, my choices, my attitude, and my spirit. I hope they will close the letter and say, "Yup, that's Mom."

I'm thus starting a new occasional series to this blog: Life Lessons I hope the boys will read these when they are old enough, and, more importantly, will act on these principles throughout their lives.

Life Lesson: Dignity

You are not better than anybody else. Don't get me wrong. You two are pretty amazing guys. You're funny, smart, handsome, joyful. God created you in His mind long before blessing me with your presence. But, you are not better than anybody else.

God crafted everybody else, too. He loves you as much as he loves your teachers, your friends, your enemies, and people living on the other side of the planet. There is no rank, no caste system, and no ruling class. The sooner you know that, the better.

This plays out when you are at a restaurant. When a server asks for your order, use a complete sentence. Do not grunt out, "Dinner #2," your eyes facing your menu. Rather, look at the server, who works hard on his or her feet, all day, and say, "I would like Dinner #2, please."

You aren't better than anybody else. The people who serve your food, clean your car, cut your hair, or serve you coffee, are God's handiwork. He smiled with delight the day each person was born. Remember that.

Every person you encounter was once a helpless baby. Every person you encounter has joys, fears, hopes, dreams, and struggles. Every person you encounter will someday breathe his or her last breath, and die.

Some people may have more or less education than you. Some people may have more or less money, physical ability, attractiveness, or wisdom than you. It doesn't matter. You are not better than anybody else.

You two are my heart, my soul, my love, my pride. Remember that every person you meet deserves dignity. After all, everybody is God's heart, soul, love, and pride.

1 comment:

Coby Goesling said...

That made me teary. What a great lesson to leave your kids.