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“Act like that and no one will like you.  You won’t have any friends.”

I have absolutely no clue what I did to prompt my mother to say this.  I just don’t remember.  But I do recall her saying it to me on more than one occasion.  I suspect it had something to do with my blunt honesty.  I can occasionally pull off the social lie but more often than not, they come out transparent.  Instead, I’ve had to learn to say something true if somewhat misleading.

“I’ve never seen a dress like that before.  Where did you find something so unique?”

“What a beautiful color.  You have such a strong sense of style.”

I may not like what the person is wearing but I’m going to sidestep telling them that.  Not to worry – if your blouse is unbuttoned or your pants unzipped, I will tell you.  I’m not trying to set anyone up for embarrassment.

Fortunately, my mother’s predictions were slightly off.  No, not everyone appreciates my candor but I am wildly popular with my friend’s autistic son.  “I’m going to go find Sue.  She’ll tell me the truth.”  But that’s okay because I can trust him to tell me the truth when I ask for some of his popcorn at the movies.  “You need to go get your own.”  No resentful sharing that will come back to haunt me with this child.  I actually find him refreshing. We are, after all, birds of a feather.

God gave us each a unique set of traits.  My friend’s son and I are bluntly honest and love super hero movies.  That said, he cannot abide coconut or spicy foods, both of which I love.  Sour snacks? Those we share.

What?  You have a different opinion? That’s okay.  We are all God’s children, quirky though we may be.



Some kids need to be encouraged to think for themselves.  My mom said that was never my problem.

When I was little, as in a preschooler, my grand-dad would take me walking with him.  He was a mining engineer and he constantly checked out rocks.  He’d roll them with his boot and maybe crack one with a hammer.  Choice bits would go in his pocket.

I had pockets too.  Mom didn’t appreciate either the number of rocks or the dirt in my pockets.  So grand-dad gave me a geologist’s bag.

Problem solved.  I filled that up and then dropped the extras down my bib overalls.  What can I say?  Some of those rocks were too good to pass up. I had learned not to put dirty things in my pockets but I was still thinking for myself.  Now I get to use that love of science in the writing I do for kids.

God created each of us with a purpose and a mission.  To find that mission, you will have to be yourself – the unique person that God created.






Have a Mary Little Christmas

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