Enough

Heart Blog

I have been notably absent from my blog lately. Mostly because I’ve been very busy, but I’d be lying if I didn’t admit that I’ve also been wrestling with how to be relevant, and even respectful, when faced with the daily barrage of heavy-duty shit going on in the world right now.

We are at a time in our history when the word ‘enough’ has never been more loaded. I love this word. It’s one of my favorite decorating mantras and until recently I didn’t realize how powerful and important this workhorse of a word really is. It can shout our frustration over the supersized greed and failed capitalism that has devoured our middle class. It can serve as a battle cry over the deafness of our wildly dysfunctional government. It can express our collective anger at a racial divide that is bordering insanity. And it can contain our fear that civilization is tragically and spectacularly coming unglued with every new and unspeakable act of global violence. Whether whispered or screamed “enough” carries the weighty demand that we stop, look, listen, and process what is happening around us. It can manifest in a petition, a legal action, a demonstration, or a prayer, but what it seems to want is action. And I find myself wondering what I alone can do?

It’s a scary time. There’s so much uncertainty that it’s hard to know whether to tune in or turn off. Both have their price. I know I have days where I’d much rather bury myself in fabric swatches than even look at the news, but we all know that denial and world blindness is not the answer. Been there, done that. And with the enormity of the problems it feels almost wrong to go about our business every day. It’s easy to feel that if you can’t go big you should just go home. I say, not so fast.

I think there is something that we can do, every day, that does make a difference. It’s called kindness.

Every single day we come in contact with strangers and people we don’t know very well and each interaction is an opportunity. An opportunity to keep a safe distance and be comfortably numb, or an opportunity to perpetuate kindness and make a connection to another human being who, like us, is just trying to get through their day. In the past few days alone I picked up a woman’s fallen cane in line at Best Buy, gave a very healthy tip to the guys at the car wash, said goodbye, by name, to the assistant of my carpet installer, gave money to a homeless person, waved to every driver who has stopped to let my car go by on a tight road, and let someone with only a few items go in front of me at the check-out. I have purposely upped my kindness game, and every day I look for ways to acknowledge, to be gracious, to connect. Because we are not alone here. We are all part of that race to be human. Not black, white, yellow or brown – just human. It does matter, and it does make a difference.

Smile first, say thank you, tip generously, hold a door, let someone pass, give up your seat, make a joke, give a compliment, remember a name, acknowledge good work, hug someone, help someone, forgive someone, always be kind. It’s never enough.

14 Comments
  • Jan Scaglia
    Posted at 13:48h, 19 July

    BRAVA LINDA!!!! You have an incredible way with words. Can you submit this to the editorial section of newspapers both print and online? Thank you for the blog. Hugs!!!!

  • Linda Feaster
    Posted at 13:55h, 19 July

    I thank you most humbly. And I’m hoping this one will get some shares out there. We need to hear it, over and over and over again. Hug back!

  • Linsey Levine
    Posted at 15:24h, 19 July

    Wonderfully written! I will share on FB and with friends who are not on FB.
    You do have a writing gift and I agree with Jan Scaglia.

  • Rhonda Jenkins-Gardinier
    Posted at 15:24h, 19 July

    Spot on, Lin.

    This post brought to mind something an acquaintance once told me during another time past when the world felt like it was unraveling. She said that when she felt powerless to effect any real change, she focused on the local, on the things and people she could see and hear and touch. Creating the world you want through your daily actions and interactions is no small contribution. In truth, the only behavior we can control is our own, and often the best way to teach is by example – realities that anyone who is a parent would be wise to acknowledge. A healthy dose of introspection is a good thing.

    All that being said about focusing on the local, I agree with Jan that a wider circulation on this post would be a good thing. Keep the words coming.

    Distance is a challenge, but friendship is enough.

  • donna moss
    Posted at 16:03h, 19 July

    Beautiful.

  • Linda Feaster
    Posted at 17:44h, 19 July

    You’re so right. I’m just trying to focus on what I can do in my own backyard and hope that it sets a good example. And I can tell you that it feels better to do it than not to.

    Mercifully, the friendship spans all space (including Pluto, the downgraded planet), time and distance.

  • Linda Feaster
    Posted at 17:46h, 19 July

    Thank you Linsey!! So happy to see you here and clearly I wouldn’t be here, talking the talk, without you. I appreciate the sharing AND the compliment.

  • Linda Feaster
    Posted at 17:50h, 19 July

    Thank you Donna. Just trying to be true to myself and spread some sunshine. Lord knows we need it!!

  • Ken Scaglia
    Posted at 19:20h, 19 July

    Exactly why I love teaching. It’s the way I use decency toward all my students, they seem to pass that along. A timely essay Linda! I feel better. Thanks!

  • Linda Feaster
    Posted at 07:19h, 20 July

    Every little thing we do gets paid forward. Good for you!

  • sandra de Novellis
    Posted at 08:18h, 20 July

    Linda, so eloquent and powerful. I will share with one of my colleagues today who while having lunch yesterday in the city were talking about this very same thing. Do we just go on with our days, business as usual when the world around us is crumbling.

  • Linda Feaster
    Posted at 08:35h, 20 July

    I think it’s more important than ever to be conscious. I know that kindness multiplies and it truly makes me feel less powerless. And I have no problem reminding us when we need reminding!! Thanks for sharing!

  • Ellen S..
    Posted at 10:37h, 20 July

    I have definitely been on the receiving end of your kindness before you “upped” your game, so I can imagine the positive energy you are passing on to others now with more intense focus. Small joy adds up to big contentment and better communities. Thank you for what you do and for inspiring us to up our game as well!

  • Linda Feaster
    Posted at 11:17h, 20 July

    Said my most eloquent friend. You are welcome. And you’re right, it feels small but exponentially it’s huge!!

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