By: Lydia Scott
Humans are strange creatures. We revel in food that’s not even real food. We love to interact with others, but often prefer it to be in any form other than face to face. And when someone we know passes away, we rush to leave them messages about how awesome we thought they were, how much we’re going to miss them, and how sad we are that we never got the chance to tell them these things before.
Why? Why do we do that? Why wait until someone has passed away to stop and tell them how cool we always thought they were? I’m not talking about your family and your really close friends. Most folks do pretty well at telling the people they’re really close to how much they love them (or at least I hope they do!). I’m talking about your neighbor; your circle of Facebook friends that you occasionally meet for wine and a chat; your co-workers; your fellow PTA members you enjoy seeing at meetings; that coffee barista who always remembers how you like your coffee and keeps her cool with the rude folks in line; that teacher who takes the time to really work with your child during class; your pastor who’s always there to listen when you need guidance. Why don’t people tell any of these acquaintances that they admire and appreciate them until they’re gone?
Think about it…do you know a mom who inspires you to work a little harder? Does your garbage collection technician go out of her way to pick up the trash that blew out of your can, and always has a smile for you? Do you often find yourself thinking “Gosh, I didn’t know that person very well in school, but they seem to do so well with making people feel appreciated!” Do you have a co-worker whose poise, grace, and kindness are at a level you strive for? Yes? Have you told any of those people the things you think about them? No? DO IT. Right now. Text her. Call him. Message her. Post it on his Wall. Mail him a card. Invite her for coffee. Mention it at the next meeting. However you tend to communicate with any of those people, make sure you tell them now, and regularly.
The truth is, with people we know but don’t “really know,” we fail to say any of the good things we think of them until we hear about the car accident, the heart attack, or the cancer. But really, so many of these people are going through life barely holding it together and possibly with no one telling them how witty or compassionate or creative they are.
Be that person. Be the person who, when you think something positive about someone, TELLS THEM, while it can still make a difference in their lives and minds. Let them know their goodness is noticed and influences someone. Love grows love. Go ahead and plant that seed now.