I admit it, some days I have to be reminded to be actively grateful for the gift of generous people in my life. It isn’t that I’m ungrateful, exactly…it’s just that I get sort of full of myself and forget to be mindful of my gratitude.
Take today, for example. I had a stack of thank you letters and donation receipts to sign, and then the envelopes to fill out and the postage, and so on…and about a million other things to attend to. So I grumped to myself.
But then I started reading the notes that accompanied the donations. Some of them were in honor of ELI’s very first Board President Sue Powell who passed away recently. (See her story here.) Some were from parents who had attended an ELI group or received help from one of our programs. One was even directed to me, personally, for some parenting help I had given. Each note filled me with pride and the joy of feeling truly valued. I was reminded how the smallest things stick with people and that we can never know how our interactions might touch another person – sometimes forever. I was particularly moved by a note from one family who wrote that Sue had worked with their child 30 years ago (!) and how she had deeply touched their lives, given them hope, and even motivated two of this child’s siblings to pursue careers working with children. Amazing that all these years later they felt strongly enough to take the time to write to us.
So I sit here now, after 5, with a stack of letters ready to mail. I am humbled and so grateful for the words that each person took the time to write, and for their monetary support of ELI. Because, truly, we could not do what we do without both. We need money to run programs and we need support and validation that we are running great programs.
I did not expect to end up feeling lucky that the task of writing all the thank you letters is mine. But I feel empowered in my gratitude. So feel free to drop me a line and tell me how we are doing. I look forward to hearing from you…and writing back!