The Difference of One

Written May 8, 2013 by Jane Valentine

I just returned from a memorial service for a friend.   I knew Andy through friends.  I did not know him well personally, but I had a sense of his soul.   I listened as co-workers, friends and family told stories.  How loved this man was.  How he was really noticed.  How his life made such a difference

Driving home I could not resist rolling the windows down all the way and letting the warm May air flow through my hair.  Feeling grateful for life and for spring, when everything is new again, I rounded the corner into my neighborhood and I thought of the things I was worried about that morning.  Things like the house needed this or that or how would I ever get everything done and I realized my worries felt lighter. 

On a deeper level I reflected on the thoughts I have each day of wanting to be sure I am making a difference, even if it is not noticed or valued.  At the memorial service I was struck by the truth that whatever the job, wherever we are, however insignificant we feel, we have an opportunity to make a difference, like Andy did. 

It only takes one life to change another.  My late husband was my “one.”  From Doug I learned what it is to “really” love.   After his passing I discovered the impact he had on others as people graciously waited in long lines at the funeral home and later from the cards, flowers and food flooding my home.  His life touched so many and profoundly softened mine.

Often after someone dies  we see the full effect of a life.  Today, I was inspired, again, to make my life count, to be “one” for some and thank others for being “one” to me.

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