I always knew I wanted to be a mother as far back as I can remember. I think it started around age five. I was just a baby, but I felt a strong desire to take care of babies. That desire never left me. Maybe I should have had more children than the two I have, but I got a late start and then life circumstances made things a little more complicated, so I only had two. But, my instincts to nurture are so strong that they seem to extend to anyone that crosses my path. Anyone with a problem, a question, a need to talk…I am right on it, I can’t help myself. I need to help people and maybe if I hadn’t confused that with maternal instincts, I might have chosen a career path that was well suited to this natural gift I seem to have been given.
Tears come to my eyes this morning as all the compliments I have been paid the past few weeks hit me. I am told I am the “voice of reason,” I bring “serenity,” I “inspire,” I “motivate,” I “care,” I’m “positive,” I’m “funny,” I’m “sweet.” I never see myself that way. And all this mostly from people who have only known me a few weeks at most. And because I have been hearing such kind words, it made me realize something about me that not quite seen before. For me, I just chalked it all up to being a “good friend.” That’s what friends do right? They jump in and rescue you when you are drowning and extend a hand to pull you up? They stay by your side, they tell you the truth you need to hear, they show compassion, they give you guidance, they love you, they nurture you, they support and encourage you. That is me in a nutshell. I’m not bragging either. I can list dozens of examples during my lifetime of having done one or more of those things. I’m not even sure, thinking back, if it’s something I have done every day, but right now it seems like it.
People seem so appreciative of me. I’m happy I affect them in a positive way because I have always considered myself a negative person. But I must have been wrong because the messages that keep coming back to me are consistently telling me I am a “positive” person. It’s changing my self image.
Sometimes people will feel like they are burdening me with their problems by coming to me. Nothing could be further from the truth. By coming to me they allow me to fill this need inside to help. I’m like the story of the guy who walks along the beach throwing starfish into the ocean…he can’t save all the starfish, but he can make a difference in the lives of those he throws back into the water. I just want to make a difference, regardless of how small, in the lives of those people I touch. I don’t even do it consciously. I am just being me doing what comes naturally.
Here is the whole starfish story: http://www.bellaonline.com/articles/art8236.asp