I love this quote from Dr. Seuss! It aligns perfectly with “I matter to who matters”. You have value. You have worth. Your voice counts. Your opinion counts. Your life matters. It matters to those who care about you…who love you… It matters to God. Especially Him. And His Son.
In the last two blogs, I talked about a couple of Christmas memorable moments that I had. The reason these times were memorable was that I knew I mattered to someone I cared about and that I knew cared about me.
There is nothing that brings me more joy than to have a conviction that someone I love or care for deeply returns those sentiments. There is something grounding about it. Those people and/or your relationship with Deity are your anchors in life. Something you can hold on to when the waters get rough.
Another Christmas memory spang to mind this morning that I wanted to share. It’s not about another Christmas memory I had where I felt or knew I mattered. This memory is about Christmases past where I tried to help someone feel that they mattered.
Ever since I was a kiddo, I had this overwhelming desire to give “things” to people to help them feel my love for them. I had some pretty good moments for a 7-9-year-old: saving up money to buy my Mom a single flower at the florist, sharing beloved Bazooka bubble gum or penny candy from Harvey’s that I bought with friends or family, trying to get the most “bang for the buck” when spending a certain birthday budget on friends or family so they would have a lot of gifts to open instead of one, buying one of my parents a special Christmas gift that I knew they would really like ( Aren’t these new plastic dinner plates so cool Mom????) and so on.
I had some bombs too. Of course, I had no money to buy anybody anything at Christmas. Dad was the funder of any gifts that came from me. Thanks, Dad! So, what bright idea did I have? I decided one year to root through my things and give them as gifts to my family. Unfortunately, my sister received most of them as they were little girl things. I still remember the look on her face when she opened a pretty crappy necklace I had given her and she knew it was a re-gift. Needless to say, that was the one AND the ONLY year I pulled off that stunt.
There was another time where my “biggest bang for the buck” failed miserably when I was entrusted with a $20 budget from a group of friends to buy my best friend, Sharon, some birthday gifts. They envisioned a magnificent present and (if I remember right) it was a bunch of $1 – $2 gifts. I believe I lost some friends over that one…..
Anyhoo – I have always (even do so now) daydreamed about how I would or could help people to know they mattered if I had the means or knew exactly what they needed.
As a teen, I wanted to be that person that gave Jerry Lewis $1,000,000 for his telethon . As I was “sponsored” for Christmas as a single Mom, I wanted to one day return that favor and sponsor a family for Christmas (‘s, ‘s and MORE ‘s!!!!). I want to be able to contribute significant cash to the St. Jude Hospital fund to help sick children. I want to buy a car for each of my family members that drive pieces of junk so they can drive safely. You get the picture…..these ideas I’ve had over the years are just the tip of the iceberg from all the countless number of thoughts I’ve had.
So where am I going with this? We all need to realize that a “who is a who no matter how small”. Try to think of someone in your life that matters to you. Do they know that? If they know that, have you shown them or done something for them recently? Have you helped them to feel valued? Appreciated? Do they know you are thinking about them?
Christmas is a great time of the year to think of that one special gift that may touch the heart of someone you care about so that they too have a Christmas memory that they mattered to somebody.
I remember a few Christmas moments where I believe a gift I gave helped the receiver to know that they were special to me. One of my sons struggled with a math class that was necessary to pass in order to graduate from high school. It was such a challenge for him that we really worried that he’d graduate. I swore to him that I would do all I could to help him pass that class and we registered him in a college math class where the high school he was at recognized as credit for graduation. I taught him the math concepts and he took the tests at the high school proctored by the high school guidance counselor. He passed !!!! HE GRADUATED!!!! That year for Christmas, I made a shadow box of his favorite high school memories and gave it to him. He cried when he opened it. I cried. Six other siblings cried. That inexpensive little shadow box had the biggest impact on all of us.
Another year one of my daughters, who is a single Mom of 2 and was very broke that year, had a wish list item for her birthday (in December) that was expensive. She didn’t have the money for it and neither did I. But, I scrimped and saved and watched for Black Friday bargains and I was able to purchase the birthday gift. When she opened it, not only was she elated that she got her (seemingly unaffordable) wish-list gift, but she was touched because she knew the sacrifice I had made to be able to buy them for her.
One more example? OK! One of my younger daughters was in love with this Sock Monkey that I bought for my (then fiance) husband. Every time we went to his house, she would hold it and threaten to steal it. One year, I asked him if I could replace his sock monkey and give her THAT sock monkey and he agreed. I’ll never forget the look on her face when she opened that gift. Another precious memory for me and the hope that she felt loved and cared for due to that selfless act.
I have a challenge for anyone that reads this blog. Whenever you read this, whether it’s December 2018 or months down the road, whoever has come into your mind as you’ve read this…do something or say something to them to let them know they matter to you. We all love to know that we matter to someone in life – let someone else have that gift. They matter. You matter. I matter – no matter how “small” we are.