One Things that Changed My Life

Chance encounters often turn out to be important…as do comments made by friends, or observations in the presence of others, a line in a book, a title of a book you haven’t read, a chance compliment, mistaken identity, a job you got for which you were not technically qualified…

Some of these “one things” are bright in my memory, probably responsive to the emotional intensity I experienced at the time. Some must be sought for, as sifting gravel looking for quartz crystal bits. I wonder if I can recall 100? I’ll change the names of some people to honor the course their lives have taken…and some folks–I never got their names… To all of you: thank you, from the wealth and depths and breadths of who I’ve become, thank you.

  1. Aunt Mozelle, the sister of my soon-to-be step-father when I was eight, who told my mother, “Virginia, it’s all right. Let her call me what she wants to call me. Come on in Little Linny.” No one confronted my mother. Not ever. And especially not a soon-to-be relative.
  2. My father, who always called me Little Linny. Though I was very small for my age till somewhere halfway through high-school, this term of endearment always made/makes me feel special.
  3. More than reading What to Say When You Talk to Yourself by Shad Helmstetter, I turned sections into exercises I performed aloud as I walked around the neighborhood park mornings. I learned to exaggerate neither the boon nor bane of my existence…to see my childhood self as my compassionate 40-ish self would see her…and comfort her…and love her…and if need be rescue her. I learned to not speak affirmations my mind would reject, nor to believe criticisms my soul would reject. Only truth is believable to the heart. Huge breakthrough. I could write chapters on how I did the exercises I invented based on reading this magnificent book, and how transformative they were. I place this book second only to the Bible.
  4. The high-schooler who by showed me how easy (and appealing to others) daily showers could be.
  5. Same person who impressed upon me the intrigue of having smooth-shaven legs.
  6. The college professor who encouraged me to kiss a lot of frogs because they may be brothers to princes…it didn’t exactly work out that way, but I learned to be more open-minded about dating and friendships.
  7. The artist who demonstrated how a room with a yellow rock fireplace, pink Formica countertops and grey vinyl tile flooring could be pulled together with carefully-chosen curtain prints and craftily painted cupboards and doors!
  8. The stranger who encountered me on the sidewalk at the entrance of the International House of Pancakes and ‘recognized’ me as a writer; though, we’d never met, nor have we yet met. His prophetic/recognition utterance encouraged me when I didn’t know how much I needed encouragement.
  9. The lover who pointed out I became sexually aroused when in a zone of prosperity, whether by accomplishment, talk or dream. That connected me to a part of who I am.
  10. The elderly neighbor who asked me while achieving our common third-floor apartment building destination whether I needed help, and my off-handing my purse to him because my arm was in severe distress due to excessive or non-ergonomic computer use. It’s ok to ask an elderly orĀ  disabled person to assist you. They enjoy being needed. You need the help! Ask for it. Accept it graciously and gratefully.

What’s your story? Who changed your life? What happened then – and now?

I wonder if I can list 100 1-things…stay with me, all right?

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One Response to One Things that Changed My Life

  1. Linda McCabe says:

    Hey Lin, I enjoyed this post. Here are some of mine…

    Passionate people have always attracted me. There was the woman who gardened with a passion. I loved to go spend time with her after school. My grandfather was a farmer and a builder. His passions became mine.

    I love to be around people who excel in their field, not just from rote learning or hours of practice, but from face-lighting, arm-waving passion. Who can take their subject and keep you listening and discussing long past what you expected.

    The woman who had a passion for growing her business from scratch, who turned an 8 x 10 shed, 7 miles out of town and a couple miles down a dirt road into three thriving natural food stores taught me that it could be done without having much to start with. I am starting my third business now, thanks to her passion.

    I have been blessed to have listeners at crucial times. My cousin, when as a child I needed to tell someone about the abuse I was experiencing. She knew what to do to make it stop. Other older sister figures, who “adopted” me when I was so alone and lost. They didn’t know what I was going through, but I appreciated them being there.

    I hope as I continue through life I can pass along a little of what I have been given.

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