So, I’ve been thinking. I’m a very passionate, opinionated, and outspoken person, so this is always a dangerous thing. I often think, “I should blog about that…” but in reality they wouldn’t be very long posts. They’re over a tweet (140 characters) but under a post size. Recent topics include:
1. Sometimes I get really annoyed when I go into a restaurant and spend good money on a dish I could easily have done much better. Is there a benefit to not having to put the time into cooking and clean-up? Sure, but not when the dish is a fraction as delicious as I could have done for a fraction of the price. My crepes are better than your crepes.
2. NPR/IPR – I generally dislike the news because it’s depressing. However, I listen to public radio every morning on the way to work (at least until my reception goes out) to make sure that I’m not totally removed from the world. Politics and current issues get me super fired up. Most recently, re-sentencing for minors. Don’t even get me started. Furious.
3. I hope I’m a gorgeous amazing old(er) lady some day. Examples: my grandmothers, Maggie Smith, Diane Keaton, Meryl Streep, Susan Sarandon, Jane Seymour, etc. I figure I have an ok shot at aging well?
Though these all seem like dismal, pessimistic things (ok, maybe not #3). I’ve also been thinking a lot lately about how lucky I am and how thankful I am for each and every day. I get to call my grandmothers (91 and 93) whenever I want, I have a family I can depend on, I’ve done some traveling, I have two degrees and am debt free, etc. I really SHOULDN’T complain at all.
Recently, somebody I would consider a dear friend in Boone, passed away. Yes, I’ve only been in Boone about a year and a half, and to be honest had only seen Dwain a handful of times but I would consider him one of my biggest fans. The first time I met him was when he came in to talk to me about planned giving and some collectible items he was considering giving to the Society upon his passing. The very first thing he said to me, “Has anybody ever told you you have the most beautiful smile?” Now, my guess is this was one of his common compliments, but it is one I get a lot. I think it’s because I have big teeth.
The point is that Dwain was always smiling, only ever had compliments to give, and within a short time of meeting me became a huge advocate and supporter of my museums. His passing was unexpected and he was by no means old, so it came as a big shock to me when I overheard somebody mention his funeral. It’s very easy to get caught up in the day to day scramble and stress that is my life, but it’s at those times I need to remember the people who are, and have been, in my life that are/were always wearing a smile for me. I need to be rosier.
Though I’ve been blessed to have many of these people in my life, there are two people who almost daily come into my mind, reminding me to live to the fullest, to take advantage of my talents, to seek opportunity, and to love (and be vocally thankful for) those close to me.
Jim, who is the real reason I found my love of museums and is (one) of the people who pushed me as an artist. When I was just in high school, he was my bus driver, and unbeknownst to be at the time a phenomenal artist. He invited me to create a mural (and later another) with him for the school board meeting room. This is how I found myself at the local historical society, losing myself in historic photos of my little blue collar hometown. His support, and early interest in my development as a person and artist, has shaped my now 12 year career in museums. Also, he taught me never to settle, in both my professional and personal life, especially as I grew older. Though you’re gone Jim, your sound advice is still with me.
My Grandpa Taplin, the closest friend I ever had, passed when I was in 6th grade and there isn’t a day that goes by I don’t think about him. As a child I thought he was the kindest, most understanding, and sweet man in the entire universe. I believed he could talk to animals and make flowers grow, ahhh… the innocence that is childhood. Even so close to his passing, he found the strength to try and sit up and play one last game of Canasta with us. In honor of him I will never eat tomato soup with anything but a big spoon. I hope someday I can be as kind and caring as he was, and to experience a love like he and my grandmother had, always adorable and always so sincere. I am proud that my niece carries their names, Allie Rose. I have a feeling she will live up to filling some very big shoes.
This post is definitely more for me than for my readers, but, as I said I’ve been thinking. Occasionally, I like to put it all down. I’ve been lucky to have a lot of truly wonderful people in my life and I hope to meet many more. Some days when things are tough, be it work, my personal life, smashing my poor car up, etc. I just need to remember (and you should too) that life is wonderful, I’m healthy, and there are much bigger things ahead.