We get taught that one grain of rice can tip the scales, that one person can make a difference, but if you’re like me you’ve thought to yourself “But I am just one person. How does that matter in a world of 7 billion people?”. So, how can one person really make a difference?
Think about it….how many people do you have in your life? Your kids, friends, family, your spouse… In thirty-something years on the planet, I have people who are still in my life that arrived into it at various stages of said life. I have people that have known me since childhood, people I met in high school. Friends from my early twenties. My three kids and my husband. My ex-husband and his family that still stays in touch with me. My birth family (my mother, my MIA father, my grandmother, my uncle, my cousin). If I die tomorrow, every one of those people would be impacted somehow. It might be just the sad news of my passing and maybe a few minutes to think of a couple of memories. Or for the people closer to me, my husband and kids especially, it would impact them a great deal. Those are my ripples.
I can only hope that my ripples have left the people inside of them better for ever having had me in their lives. I hope that I have taught my people good things and that I have been worth the journey in their lives. But either way, I have left ripples. Or if the person has been a negative enough influence in your life, you might think of it more as shock waves.
I have learned in the last year and a half that certain people (read: my mother ) have done a lot more damage than I thought they ever would have. Or could have. And it has left shock waves. I came into some more info recently that just really sat me down. I wanted to run. I wanted to hide. I heard about all of the horrible things my mother really thinks of me. I thought that these were just things she might have hurled at me in a moment of anger, but no….they were all true, at least in her mind.
And MAN, did that hurt. I realized that she really didn’t know me at all. She has accused me of everything I have ever really been afraid of. She hit me where I live and has told a lot of people that I’m a really terrible mother. If you know me, darling readers, you know that if nothing else about me is ever true, this is: I have been a mother longer now than I haven’t. That’s the one big,great thing I have done with my life is become somebody’s mom. My kids are everything to me. I’m home schooling my youngest not because it’s the easy way to go, but because I truly believe that it’s the best thing I could do for her.
It caused me to doubt everything because she knew just enough to hit me where it would hurt the most. I couldn’t think and I couldn’t breathe. I saw that scared little girl that I knew so well.
But then something happened today. I was processing all of this and trying to find my way out. Because when someone hurts you, you can’t just stay in that place. Sometimes it might take you a little longer to work through the pain, and that’s all right. Just as long as you move forward. And as I was processing I stood there looking in the mirror at the eyes of a hurt, scared little girl. And I realized that I am closer to 40 than to that little girl. I’ve done a lot of work to be the person I am today.
“I am almost 40 years old! I am not a scared little girl anymore. I’m not afraid of you anymore. You can’t hurt me any more. I AM NOT AFRAID OF YOU!”
And Xunnie, being the existentialist Xunnie, realized that you affect everyone you meet. Even if it’s just a little bit. How often has someone turned your day around just by holding the door for you or smiling at you when you’re having a really bad day? I know that I have been the greatest influence on my husband. He would be a totally different person if we had never met. And so would I because he’s done the same for me.
Mind your ripples, and may you always be blessed with gentle ripples from other people.