“Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility, value others above yourself” Philippians 3:2
Two events I am hosting are coming up quick and the panic is starting to kick in! October 6th is the 4th annual Special Needs Movie Night. Over the years it’s become one of my favorite nights of the year. Last year, almost 300 people gathered together. The overwhelming feeling of true community resonated in the crowd. Strangers talked to each other. Meltdowns were ok. Screaming was ok. Quiet retreat was ok. If you were there, you were welcome.
The second event on November 9th, is the first fundraiser for The NeighborBridge. Am I ready? NO!!!! Have I ever been ready for any event I’ve ever done,… NO!!! But, I just DO IT. It doesn’t matter the outcome. It matters that it happened, and that every year it will grow and get better.
Tonight I finally found the time to start scheduling social media posts for movie night. It’s so heart warming to see the pictures from last year and take stock of just how amazing this event has become. It’s a reminder for all of us.. that the little things matter. It was a perfect example that when true community exists… it doesn’t matter how high you’ve climbed the corporate ladder, or how much is in your bank account… rather,.. how you treat those around you. You are the sum total of the person you are to OTHERS. No amount of money can buy you true connection or afford you an excuse for turning a blind eye. All anyone will ever remember of you, is how you treated them.
Movie night has become the place you can come as you are and be truly accepted. It’s been an amazing journey just these past few years seeing this grow and I couldn’t be more thankful for every single person that comes, sponsors, volunteers or just supports the effort. But,.. why.. why do I do it?…
It’s been a long day in the mortgage business today. Rates are crazy low and people are coming out of the woodwork to refinance or to get off the fence they’ve been on about buying a home. But finally, I found the time about an hour ago to start on my social media posts for these events.
I made myself a martini and decided.. HERE I GO! I have two hours to still afford myself 5 hours of sleep before the alarm goes off again.
Kids asleep,… check.
House clean,… check.
Day job checklist done,… check.
Slight buzz,… check.
Creative juices flowing,… CHECK!
“BEYAHHH”, Eric yells as he walks out of his room. It’s been his new favorite saying for the past 4 months. We have no idea what it means, but we do know that every time he says it we have to say it back to him. And, that he has to watch our mouth close up say it back to him. All good though right?? That’s easy.
“BEYAHHH”, Eric bellows as he walks closer to me. He grabs me face, waiting for my reply. “Beyahh”.. I say to back to him. Before he lets go I squeeze in..”Eric, you know everything I do is for you right?”. I just wanted him to know how special he is to me and maybe, just maybe to get a little smile or nod from him he understands… instead..
As In the moment as I was, looking into his eyes and trying to connect with him as he held my face… He decided it was the perfect time to smash his entire forehead against my mouth and nose.. On impact I honestly thought he broke my nose and loosened a front tooth. After the shock and pain subsided a moment later I told him..”It’s ok Eric,.. I love you”.
I don’t know why he did it. I’ll never know. He wasn’t upset in any way that I could tell. But it happened and it was over. And so we move on.
Eric went off to bed without any apparent absorption of what just happened. I sat on the couch as I was,… still feeling the sting of the headbutt.. Realizing that too often in life we EXPECT something from what we do. When I told Eric “I do what I do for him”, selfishly I hoped that resonated in some way with him so he would realize how special he was and maybe give me a little nod, extra kiss, or even a slight smile to acknowledge my effort…
But who am I? He is special because God made him. I was a vessel, nothing more. Expecting a “thank you” in any circumstance in life is just selfish. If you are doing anything because you want a superficial acknowledgment… Well, you’re wasting your time.
For what it was worth, perhaps Eric’s headbutt was a very physical way of telling me to stop being selfish. To stop seeking praise and just follow my path. It’s funny how there is always more than one way to look at something.
Do I feel discouraged? That would be natural right, as I feel my lip swelling… But do I?
The reply Eric gave me wasn’t what I hoped for, but it was just what I needed.
I know deep down Eric knows how I love him and how his being has inspired the purpose in me I never knew I had. He knows that his momma would do anything to make a better WORLD for him. And frankly, even if he doesn’t “know” now because of the blessings God has given him in his ability or inability to understand.. I know that one day in Heaven, I will speak to my son and he will say it was all ok and that he loves me too. That he will say that he knows he was enough here on Earth… That he inspired the best in me and others he touched.. and that his BEING made a difference.
Stop expecting a thank you. Stop expecting an acknowledgement. Do what you do.. whatever it is.. because it’s the right thing to do and because it’s what God has put on your heart. Live in those moments. Live in the smiles they bring. Live through the memories shared and the relationships made. Live, in these moments, as these are the ones God has made for you to truly feel alive.
It’s not money. It’s not acknowledgment. It’s just you, following what you have been called to do. Callings, do not have to make sense. In fact, they can scare the hell out of you. They can put you in uncomfortable places that make you feel like you should turn and run.. but you don’t.. because it’s the only place you’ve ever felt at home.
Do what you do, because it matters,.. not, for a thank you.
I, am a blessed woman.