Back in my blogging heyday, I was lucky enough to see Brene Brown speak, at Blissdom (Find Your Bliss!) in Nashville in 2011. She talked to us about wholeheartedness and about having friends who will help hide the body**
This was just after Brene's first Ted Talk went viral and just before she blew up and landed on Oprah.
I've since seen her turned into memes and today a friend posted her Values on Facebook, asking, what are your two?
It's a lot to contemplate but as I scrolled through, I noted the ones that really - REALLY - stuck out to me.
I resolved at Compassion and Creativity.
I really need people to care about one another. I need people to have EMPATHY (which, strangely to me, wasn't on the list) and care about those things that affect others that they may not feel or experience themselves.
You're the citizen of a developed nation? Care about the people in third world and war-torn countries.
You are safe and secure in your home? Care about the law enforcement and military that risk their lives.
You can pay your bills on time? Care about the people struggling to feed their families.
You sit at home, at no risk of contracting coronavirus? Care about the front-line and essential workers.
You had a baby as planned? Care about infertile couples, and those with no access to birth control.
You go to the doctor and then pick up your prescriptions? Care about the people without healthcare.
You live a privileged white existence? Care about systemic racism.
"Art is to the community what thoughts are to the individual. It's where we reflect on who we are, who we hope to be, what we've gone through, and where we hope to go. The entertainment [of art] is just a byproduct."
This quote is from the WTF with Marc Maron podcast that I happened to listen to this morning where he interviewed New Orleans actor Wendell Pierce. (It is just one among several really smart and thoughtful comments he made. Seriously, Do yourself a favor and go listen to that interview.)
Music, art, poetry, theater, writing...this is my sustenance, my manna, my power.
Maybe some of us can live off of joy and optimism and truth, but I need ART in my life.
When Winston Churchill was asked to cut arts funding for the war effort, he replied, "What, then, are we fighting for?"
** At Blissdom 2011, Brene Brown told the story of a friend who had an alcoholic mother, who showed up at her house one day and proceeded to pass out on her sofa. Her friend called Brene and said, "My kids will be home from school soon and I need someone to help me hide the body." That has been my definition of TRUE FRIENDSHIP ever since.