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Kickstart the Heart

December 11, 2012

This past weekend I embarked on a multi-hour road trip with some friends. Of course this type of setting is extremely conducive to good conversation, especially among those you know and trust. Two of my fellow travel mates are husband and wife, whom already have one toddler son as well as another child on the way. At some point during the excursion home, I asked verbatim: “So when did you experience that moment where you looked at your son and thought – ‘Holy crap, I love this kid!'”? …Eloquently worded, I know.

The mother replied, “I was kind of out of it immediately after the birth. But a day or so later, I was holding him… and we were just looking deeply into each others eyes… and I just lost it”. As I listened, I knew she was recalling one of the realest, rawest moments in life. When she said she “lost it”, it meant more than her composure. She lost herself in a sense, and is now completely devoted to loving and caring for this child. I understood that she would do and sacrifice anything for her son and loved him more than I could even begin to understand. I’ve known this woman since elementary school, which is a good 20x longer than her son has known her, but she wouldn’t think twice about literally side-kicking me in the aorta if it would be for the benefit of her child. I know this because she’s done it before when we were kids, and for much less  at that – but that’s another story.

Witnessing her complete love for her son only made me realize how selfish I am. I’m not trying to compare, just pointing out that it served as a wake up call of sorts. I think I do a good job of putting on a generous front. I’m not very stingy with sharing material things, but it’s really just compensation for the fact that I will nearly always put myself first when it comes to matters of the heart and soul. I’ll buy you lunch, I’ll donate to charity, I’ll give gifts; but if your happiness comes at the cost of mine, 9 times out of 10, I’ll leave you to fend for yourself and get mine. Sadly, this is perfectly acceptable in today’s day and age.

Deep down, I know it’s not enough to settle for the social status quo. And I’m deeply apologetic to those I’ve hurt along the way in the name of self-protection. I’m looking to learn to love others, regardless if it is a joyous or hurtful experience for me. And I mean this in the application of friendships, romance, family, and Faith … and everything in between. Because believe me, I can think of many examples, past and present, where my actions clearly reflect my inability to be selfless. Folks, please excuse the growing pains.

So, I guess in the mean time all I can say is – Forgive me. I’m trying. I promise.

Now Playing: Jacqueline’s Cover of “Pour Out My Heart”

Someone tell this girl that she needs to record more music. She won’t listen to me.

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