The courage to serve them with reliance / Face my mistakes without defiance / Show them I’m worthy / And while I show them  / I’ll show me / So, let them bring on all their problems / I’ll do better than my best / I have confidence they’ll put me to the test / But I’ll make them see I have confidence in me…   -Sound of Music

I walked out into the sunshine after taking a call from my condo office that a package had arrived. I knew what it was. I knew exactly why I didn’t get it. I had called the office to refuse it, but no one answered. I was absolutely stuck walking home carrying something I wasn’t sure if I’d ever open it. I put the box on my kitchen table as I tried to reach the recipient one, more, time. His phone was off. This was a goodbye of sorts. Inside lay a pair of gorgeous, pearl, earrings. It matched a necklace and ring that he had given me on Mother’s Day. They were exquisite, flawless and I kept them on the table until I could decide how to proceed.

People leave. Friends die. Companies close. Health fails. This, is life. In those moments where I walked to pick up the package, I marveled at my ability to walk at all.  Emotional weight is a perception only to ourselves. No one can guess what we carry, but we, ourselves know the toll of what’s on our shoulders. One foot in front of the other there and then back, I managed a small success.  That was the crux of it: if we don’t celebrate our small successes, we’ll be over run and complicated by life’s failures. Maybe no one cared that I managed to get home without crying, but I did. The big successes don’t define as well as the small successes. How we wake up in the morning, how we treat others and our mindset is what will create better situations. How we decide in the moments of the greatest weight what our path will be, determines who we truly are.

I laid out the earrings and sat down for bit in front of the television. Almost in seconds, rain started to pour my windows and the earlier sunshine seemed like it never happened at all. I turned on Channel 4 to see about the weather and Oprah, (who I only remember watching with my mother after school,) was on talking about The Sound Of Music.  Julie Andrews had lost her voice years before after throat surgery and I listened to her articulate an answer to her own loss and how she found hope:

The wonder is and it’s true: when God closes a door, somewhere he opens a window. I began to write and started the Julie Andrews Collection with my daughter. Then my daughter said, “Mom! You just found a different way of using your voice.”

Nothing is certain, this I know.  Michael Kraabel shared the quote with me when we filmed, Driven Together, the Ezra and Ira Story, “Each day we wake up on the right side of the dirt, is a good day.”  That’s one of the most brilliant quotes I’ve ever heard. I am alive, I am walking and although the weight of the past month bears down, I am strong.

My gift giver is on a flight somewhere.  I’m not sure where, actually.  I’m not sure he knows, either.  As angry as I want to be, the earrings are beautiful and I know they came from a kind and thankful place.  It’s the small successes and tonight as I attend the premier of our movie, I’m going to wear mine.