Jack Layton, former leader of the federal opposition, wrote these words, in an open letter to Canadians, shortly before he died. It’s a beautiful sentiment, don’t you think? I was reminded again of this quote when my eldest son, who turns 16 next week, sent me a link by email. He is using Layton’s words as part of his email signature. I was humbled to know that my teenaged son would choose such a quote, that at 16 he sees the value in the virtues of love, hope and optimism. This is something worth celebrating!
This is my 100th post and it coincides with the Canadian Thanksgiving celebration, so today I’m going to celebrate not only an important blogging milestone, but also the other good things in my life. So back to my boy, who is already stepping out and doing his part to change the world. On Wednesday, he got home at 7:00 because he volunteered after school at a homeless shelter. On Thursday, along with his brothers, he shaved his head for the sixth year in a row in support of Cops for Cancer. Every year the police in British Columbia complete arduous cycling trips, fundraising for pediatric cancer. Everywhere they stop, people like my kids shave their heads and donate funds they’ve raised in the weeks beforehand.
My two older boys boys started participating in the event the year my dad, their beloved grandfather, was diagnosed with cancer. It was their idea to do it. Each year since then, they and their friends have fundraised each September, and shaved their heads just before Thanksgiving. This was my youngest son’s second year shaving his head. He and a number of his classmates raised $85.00 at school doing bake sales. In the years that my three guys have participated, they, along with the friends that have joined them, have raised somewhere in the neighbourhood of $10,000 for Cops for Cancer.
I am proud of my guys for participating; and I am awed by the students at one Victoria high school, who raised over $100,000 for Cops for Cancer this year. This fundraiser is such a part of the school culture that something like a quarter of the student body and teachers, male and female, shave their heads each year. When I hear stories like this I feel so hopeful about the future. We are in good hands.
Other things worth celebrating: it’s the 8th of October, and the daytime temperatures are still hitting 20 degrees. The last couple of days have been summertime hot! I was out hiking this afternoon, and everybody was in shorts and t-shirts still. The evenings are cool, which is good, because yesterday I was at friends to celebrate Thanksgiving, and turkey is not hot weather food. By the time we sat down to eat, the temperatures had dropped nicely, and we had a wonderful evening, nine adults and young adults, all talking and laughing around the dinner table until somewhere around midnight. I feel so fortunate to have such dear friends in my life.
And in terms of my blog, there are all kinds of things to celebrate. I am shocked that I’ve arrived so soon at 100 posts. When I started, I had no idea how much there would be to love about blogging. I had no idea how much I’d come to love the writing. Nor could I have anticipated how the act of writing would fuel my creative energy. The more I write, it seems, the more I have to write about.
I had no idea that I would become a compulsive photographer, recording everything not only in writing, but also in images. And, most importantly, I had no idea how much I would come to love the blogging community. I love visiting blogs, and discovering new blogs. When I see that certain of my blogging friends have posted, I can’t wait to get over to their blogs to see what they’re writing about. As soon as But I’m Beautiful, or The Landy, or Susie Lindau, or Tarnation and Eudemonia post, I have to go and check them out. As soon as Afternoon Storm, or Fear No Weebles post, I’m there. I love reading Brigitte’s Banter, and East of Malaga, and Alarna Rose Grey. There are so many beautiful writers out there, so many truly funny, entertaining, wise and insightful bloggers to discover.
And I love the interaction, the conversations that start up where the post finishes. I like leaving comments for other bloggers, and I so appreciate the people who come to my blog and “like” my posts, or better yet, leave a comment. Thank you, all of you!
One of the nicest things that happens around this place is that people nominate you for awards. I would like to thank Denise from Inspired to Ignite: Moving from Surviving to Thriving for nominating me for the One Lovely Blog Award. Denise writes movingly about her journey of recovery from childhood abuse. She is a remarkable woman.
Rather than nominating another fifteen bloggers, today I’ll just suggest that you check out Denise’s inspiring blog, perhaps visit one or two of the blogs I’ve mentioned above, and read Le Clown’s post, Bloggers for Movember.
The Movember cause is very close to my heart, because I lost my dad to prostate cancer. And if we’re celebrating the good here today, my dad was one of the best, a man with a merry and generous heart, and a lovely sense of humour. He embodied Jack Layton’s words. He was all about love and hope and optimism. I miss him every day.
Le Clown has all kinds of suggestions for how we in the blogging community can raise awareness and funds for the Movember cause. I will be following my children’s lead here. If they can shave their heads for Cops for Cancer, then I can certainly do my part, and become a Mo Sista!
Love. Hope. Optimism. Good advice, Jack. We can change the world.