Say Anything

“Oh the comfort, the inexpressible comfort of feeling safe with a person:  having neither to weigh thoughts nor to measure words, but pour them out just as they are, chaff and grain together.  Knowing that a faithful hand will take and sift them, keep what is worth keeping, and with the breath of kindness blow the rest away.”  – John Oliver Hobbs

My mother-in-law has had this quote, written in beautiful calligraphy, framed and hanging on her kitchen wall for over thirty years.  A dear friend gave it to her.  This past weekend she gave it to me.  I am still blown away sitting here looking at it, because I know how special it is to her.  I need to find the perfect place to hang it.

What I love about this quote is that it describes an essential friend we all need.  So often we guard what we say and lack the freedom to truly express who we are with others. Why?  Because most people in our lives are judgmental, jealous, or conditional with their love.  Few seek to know us at our core.  Even fewer give the benefit of the doubt and are quick to forgive.  But when you have someone who loves you no matter what you say or do, it is a true gift.  Recognize and nurture those relationships.  They are the ones that matter.

Do you have friends you feel safe with in your life?  More importantly, are you the type of friend that others feel safe with?

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About Time with Tracy

Busy mother of two, kickboxing addict, and clotheshorse. I play basketball and wear stilettos, not necessarily at the same time. I love coffee, red wine & a medium rare steak. My primary focus in life is to serve and encourage others. I'm a nerd with blonde hair and a southern accent. Nine out of ten people are shocked to learn I have a BS in Statistics and Industrial Management from Carnegie Mellon University. I started my career as an IT analyst with a ginormous consulting firm. After dabbling in strategy and business process reengineering, I changed careers to what might be considered insane: teaching teenagers. I taught at a private middle school in Houston, TX where I served as the Math Department Chair and Head Girls Basketball Coach. In 2004 my husband and I moved to the San Francisco Bay Area where I continued to teach until we started a family. During that time I served on the Board of Directors at the Valley Pregnancy Center, where I was passionate about helping women in crisis. Loving people unconditionally is a ridiculously big deal to me. Last year we were thrilled to move back to Texas. I currently work at home in Austin raising our children, sprinkled in with massive amounts of laundry. I'm also a yoga newbie and enjoy mentoring executives for non-profit organizations.
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11 Responses to Say Anything

  1. Robert Taylor says:

    This reminds me of a quote I heard recently: “Be who you are, and say what you feel. Those who mind don’t matter, and those who matter don’t mind.” (supposedly Dr. Suess).

    Love that.

    I get in trouble for that every once in a while (by someone with thin skin or an agenda), but my friends know that I’m telling them things straight, not through “filters”.

    I hope that my friends view me as someone they can be “straight” with…

    • Robert, I love that Dr. Suess quote! Of course being tactful is an important thing to consider when being straight with people, but I think that we’ve swung so far the other way that people are afraid to express their opinion or say what they feel anymore. Thanks for stopping by the blog. Always love hearing from you!

  2. Jen says:

    What an inspirational Mother-in-Law. These words are so, so true. You can only live your life one way, true to yourself and your being. Thanks for the reflective moments, we don’t always make them happen ourselves, but your blog encourages us!!!

  3. Heidi says:

    This is beautiful, Tracy. I find these are the same friends for whom your silence speaks as loudly as your words. Such friends are rare and so precious to me. Thanks for the reminder to cherish them and to ensure that I am creating that kind of safety for those I love as well.

  4. Desha says:

    I love this Tracy. I am very fortunate to have more than one friend like this in my life.

  5. Mike Bonifay says:

    Very nice! So true.

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