This Little Light of Yours [Tall Drink of Nerd]

 In *Archives, Amy Robinson

You inspire me. Several people I know have taken amazing journeys this year. Some are family, some are friends, some are acquaintances or old relationships tracked only via Facebook. Some are at a height of success in their ventures, some are just starting out. They all have one thing in common, they are sharing their accomplishments and struggles. Whether they do that by posting status updates, newly created blogs or sharing in person. You folks inspire me.

The other thing I noticed from a couple of these adventurers, they wonder if sharing their story means anything. Sometimes writing about yourself feels self-indulgent at worst, or like you are echoing into an empty canyon at best. I can only tell you that you hooked me. Your example of persistance shines like a torch when I’m in the middle of dark doubt.

My older sister is one of the best examples. When she was a little girl, Janet made up her mind to be a “travelling art teacher”. She always had talent, and smarts. Janet studied graphic arts in college. She married a year out of school and devoted herself to being a wife and mother to two kids, who have recently flown the nest. While she’d always been creative during that time, she has decided to re-engage her artistic self, and to share it with the world on her blog They Gave Me Sketchbooks. It’s scary to start up something you love after a few decades. It’s even scarier to push it out into the world for judgement. But she’s inspired me. Anytime I’m too tired to write, I peruse her blog and then get busy. Part inspiration, part sibling competition.

Other inspiritors include:
An old college buddy who I haven’t spoken to, aside from exchanging some FB comments, in a few decades. She has lost over 70 lbs by eating right and exercising. She’s blogging about it and inspiring others.

A co-volunteer at Lange, who has fostered several kittens this year. Her example has taught me to be open to loving and saving lives, even though it breaks your heart when those furry critters leave your home to go to their new family.

My artist friend from years ago, who produces and encourages creativity in women, well everybody around her really, through positive and passionate shows and workshops.

Finally, there is this guy. I don’t know him, but his video went viral. Every time I think of stopping, if it’s running or yoga or writing, this guy floats into my brain. I can hear him saying “Just because I can’t do it today, doesn’t mean I won’t be able to do it some day.”

There is a quote attributed to Buddha: “Thousands of candles can be lit from a single candle, and the life of the candle will not be shortened.” When you share those struggles, I am moved. I am motivated. Whether it is to sign up for a 5k race (maybe a 10k this year?) or to start sketching out little bits of art just to awaken other areas of my brain. Maybe you encourage me to follow my art, even when I’m the only one paying attention. You’ve got me walking around singing “This Little Light of Mine” because you’ve encouraged me to let it shine. Thank you.

featured image credit: martin.linkov

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