Yesterday Flash posted a list of the 10 best compliments he's ever received because as his mom advised when he was a kid, “Forget the bad stuff said about you and always remember the compliments.”
That was advice I needed to hear in light of yesterday's post and the hurtful things that have been hurled at me this week. So, with that I will share my Top Ten...well, 10 that I can remember and that made me beam or made me laugh.
1. Your breasts make splendid pillows. Spoken by Isaac when he was about 9 or 10 and we were snuggled up on the couch watching TV. I almost split a gut laughing.
2. If I'm going to die, I want to die in your arms. I don't know if you'd call this a compliment but when it's spoken by someone who doesn't have a lot of time left it tends to stick with you.
3. Do you still write beautiful stories? This was what my second grade teacher asked me every time she saw me over the years, even after I was married with children.
4. I knew you belonged in college but didn't know how you'd do it financially because I had no way to help you. I'm proud of you for figuring it out. I didn't realize how hopeless Mom felt about this and given that she is about the best problem-solver and most resourceful person I know, this meant a lot.
5. Well done, Miss Lime. Nicely argued. (with a slight bow and a smile) Said by my 12 grade Economics teacher who I was sure would hit the roof when I finally nailed him to the wall in a debate. Instead he had this classy response. My respect for him took an exponential leap when I realized he wasn't about winning but about proving you reasoned well.
6. You make a damn fine Funny Cake. Your mother taught you well. Dad is not one to ever give praise. On the exceedingly rare occasions he does it is always qualified by some statement of how I missed perfection in some way. This is the single bit of unqualified praise he gives and he includes my mother (who he often took delight in criticizing) so it's a bonus.
7. Even at your worst you are still beautiful to me and that's when I get a chance to show you how much I love you. Well, that still makes me choke up.
8. I LOVE your mind! I've heard it after spirited discussion on points of disagreement and after describing creative forms of retribution for deserving parties. It's all good. This is high praise to me.
9. Thank you for helping me finally beat this bozo with a better patient story! Upon my discharge from OT to get my arm working again, one of my therapists gave me a hug and said this knowing me well enough to know I'd laugh (Hey, 3x a week for 6 and a half months, you get to know a person). Apparently the previous winning patient story of how a person got injured was a lady who dislocated her shoulder when she threw her hands in the air during a roller coaster descent. My tale of backyard ziplining disaster demolished that along with my arm. Woohoo!
10. Your grandmother was so proud of what you were doing in Trinidad. At Nana's funeral I was a weepy mess. One of her friends said this to me and I can't tell you what it meant because when we told my family we were moving to Trinidad EVERYONE was against it.
Now, as you know I have had some crap days lately. Yesterday, was a continuation of that unpleasantness and by the end of the day I was just spent. Then Isaac announced he needed art supplies for a project that is due today so off I trudged to the craft store. The cashier was a pleasant, cheery girl with a beautiful smile. After she handed me the bag and receipt and smiled again, making eye contact I said, "I've been dealing with grouchy, miserable people for 3 days. Yours is the first smile I have seen today. It's lovely. Thank you for giving it to me." She turned 10 shades of pink, smiled again, and said, "Thank you."
So my request of you is to either steal this and do it at your own place or share your favorite compliment in the comments. Then make sure you give someone around you a sincere word of praise.
Thanks also to those who took time to leave words of encouragement yesterday whether it was here or in email or any other fashion. They are very appreciated and not at all taken for granted.