give what you can, take what you need…
February 14, 2012
from our friends at James River High School, Richmond, Va.
I’ve been meeting with some kids from the Leadership Center at James River High. I was introduced to them by their Ethics teacher Mr. Couillard, affectionately called Mr. C.
I thought I was going to share my story, inspire a bit, blah, blah, blah….but the universe pulled this HUGE switcheroo on me.
I was stunned by these kids, their heart, their intentions, their focus on kindness and change…So when I got their list of plans for a You Are Loveable campaign at their school, I think my heart just melted. The Junior class took this original idea and ran so far with it with so much soul and creativity, I was blown away.
A bunch of guys giving girls lame pick up lines to make them smile
Somebody to LOVE by Queen playing on the intercom
A post-it kindness blast in the school parking lot
Sidewalks chalked with messages of love
I have looked at the list all week, with this silly grin on my face, imagining the kindness descending on that school in a big, big way.
But then today… Mr C. sent me the picture above of the bulletin boards filled with messages- Give What You Can, Take What You Need…and I started to cry a little…realizing this is the heart of kindness, I have something to give and I need to take something too.
I thought of all the sweet things planned for today- the You Are Loveable messages all over, the Cotton Candy Kindness later this afternoon…those are my Give What You Can sort of things…and then there are the Take What You Need things swirling…I don’t think I’ve taken it and I need it today.
Today I need:
Peace while I wait to find out if a big opportunity is going to happen to carry this message so much further (it feels sort of bleak at the moment, your good thoughts would be appreciated)
Community to gather and stand in some more complicated kindness- like the kind where you have to navigate different needs and still stand in what you believe in- in this case, it’s a skate park and finding the sweet middle place of compromise where everyone is valued and heard
Protection for a tender heart and clarity to see this work and this life for all its beauty- the comparison gremlin is knocking at the door of my soul hard right now.
SO on this day of love, please Give What You Can and Take What You Need in the comments…it can be our virtual bulletin board today inspired by Mr. C and the kids.
And just imagine all those high school kids kindness bombing their school, and people finding a message reminding them we are all loveable, and some grown kid eating pink fluffy candy goodness in the park…and know that kindness changes everything.