A Random Note of Gratitude

Hope is an ephemeral thing for me, which is probably why I’m so fascinated by her. (The concept. Not me, for while my theme song might be I’m Just Too Good to Be True, today’s post is about Bigger Stuff.)

She’s like the alpha male in a romance; there are moments you think you’re being screwed over, you know you’ll never quite contain the relationship, yet primordial impulse makes you want to straddle that energy all the same.

Anyway, while I have more cognitive posts about hope that are presently a-brewing, I offer a letter and an invitation. (Because some things need to be non-said):

Dear _______:

I don’t know who you are. I don’t know how much of my writing you’ve read. I don’t know if you’re male, female, or even human.* 😉 But your comment the other day on [insert appropriate social media site here] was exactly what I needed to hear at the time.

How did you know what to offer when I didn’t even know what to ask? I find this very puzzling.

I don’t mean to denigrate your effort, but you must understand I’m not a complete stranger to encouragement. Frankly, I’ve had people with more known credentials than you who’ve been more effusive with their praise. Somehow, their remarks never warmed me as yours did.

It’s like you’re a hope ninja with super sekret hope throwing stars. You crept in over my stone wall and into the mud room. You slayed the Doubt Monster that none of us even knew hid behind the upright freezer.  (Which we should have known if we’d been thinking, because freezer-burn and doubt are such natural companions.)

Thank you.

Please train me in your lightening-the-dark arts.

Please train the world.

I offer this letter in the humble belief it may add to your own hope. I’m sure there are days where even ninja masters know despair. On this day, if none other, someone appreciated your efforts.

By now you’ve probably noticed that you’re missing a set of nunchuks. Yeah, sorry about that. I know it’s an odd way to demonstrate gratitude. I’ve just never had good aim, so it seemed pointless to steal a star. Also, my theft was not for me, but for the greater good. What you’ve affirmed for me again is that while hope may seem elusive, it can appear out of nowhere, at the darkest of times, and pass through the lips of a perfect stranger.  

Maybe today I’ll be that stranger for someone else.

Gentle Reader, I’ve purposefully left the dedication above blank. While this post was prompted by a specific interaction, it might as easily been written to any of you. I may not say this often, but your presence does matter to me.

And now, can you extend the theme? Is there a time you recall when the smallest of gestures made you feel you could turn a difficult corner? A stranger you’d like to acknowledge? A tiny awesome to share?

As a holy rollin’ preacher might say as they extend their arms and make spirit fingers, “Show me the love.”

*If you’ve seen the comments on my blog, you’ll know it would be hasty of me to prejudge your species.

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11 thoughts on “A Random Note of Gratitude

  1. *hugs*

    I want hopeified nunchuks, too.

    This is difficult to admit, but last year I spent almost a week in a mental health ward, and when I got there I was terrified. But one tech was just so NICE and nonjudgmental (they all were, but Sunday sticks out)… so much so, that the most important thing I did there was go on a mission to make every other patient smile at least once a day. It was like this chain letter of hope, from Sunday to me to whoever, and it kind of grew. It was really a unique thing.

  2. I love it! Especially where you compare hope to the alpha male in a romance.

    To answer your question, small gestures have helped me turn immeasurable corners – especially with regards to writing. I have this woman in my critique group who has such a knack for finding that little ray of hope and making me believe that it’s all going to happen for me. Instead of tearing my submissions apart, she shows me the path to the next level. I love people who can do that.

  3. Awwww. This made me feel tingly. It is funny how you can find those boosts from the most unexpected places. I really enjoyed this, both because it was nice, and because it fills ME with appreciation too.

    (And Jess, I love your story–a passing the kindness torch in a place where people need it most)

  4. Aw, awesome post! Love the hope ninja. As it happens, I’m not having a great day today so I can’t think of a specific moment, but I know it’s happened. And I’m basking in the glow of supportive friends.

  5. Such a sweet entry!

    I have had so many of these moments in my life that I feel truly blessed.

    Because of this, one of the most memorable quotes from Tennessee Williams’ A Streetcar Named Desire by character Blanche Dubois has deep personal meaning for me: “Whoever you are, I have always depended on the kindness of strangers.”

  6. Jess, that’s my experience about hope too: if you watch for it, notice when it blooms and pass it on, there are flowers enough for everybody. I’m glad you had that experience at what must have been a dark time.

    Also, “hopeified nunchuks”. I love it. Some day it’ll go on the Team Tart t-shirts. 😉

    Kirsten, your CP sounds fabulous. That’s a narrow path to find, and she sounds nibble of feet.

    Hart, hee. Glad to pass the torch. Thank you!

    JennW, 🙂

    Tracey, supportive friends are a must. Sorry about your day. Sometimes all I can do is hope that I’ll remember to hope tomorrow, LOL.

    Becke, Vice versa, kid.

    Glinda, aw, I love that quote! Thanks for sharing. 🙂

  7. That Doubt Monster can be so HUGE sometimes that it makes you forget how vulnerable it is when hope (or Hope!) is around. I like that hope can be disseminated, that it’s not a finite resource, and that it touches everyone in different ways.

    Great post, Hope. Thanks for sharing. 🙂

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