PreScript: I wrote this blog a year ago, a few weeks after I met Leslie. It has been waiting for the right time to be published, and now is the right time. I hope you are able to love and learn these lessons from this article, without having to meet Leslie herself. xo Devorah
Let me introduce you to Leslie. Leslie is my great friend. I met her in a very unusual way, but we’ll get to that later. Immediately upon introduction it was clear that Leslie was near and dear to my heart. It took a while, though, until I actually put into words my feelings for Leslie, such as “Leslie is my friend” and “I love Leslie”.
Here is why it is so important for me that you meet her: Leslie has taught me invaluable lessons and I feel it is my calling and my duty to impart these lessons to those who are willing to listen.
Here is what Leslie has taught me and continues to teach me:
1. Patience. One cannot rush the process of life. Things happen according to a certain timeline for a reason, and one must use these opportunities to learn and master patience. This is so you can get to the other side of the process with your nails not bitten off and your hair not pulled out. Also, it saves those around you from the ranting that usually goes on when one does not learn patience. (Right? We’ve all been there… Just take a child in the backseat of a car for a thirty minute drive: “are we there yet?”…)
2. Acceptance. G-d has things happen for a reason. I’m talking about flooded basements, getting fired, being sick, broken bones. They all happen for a distinct purpose. If we only get annoyed and complain and get all upset about it, or worse, try to fight it, we miss the point. If we really fight it, it usually gets worse before it gets better. However, and it took me a long time to learn this lesson – but boy did it change my life – if we accept whatever cosmic stuff happens to us, I mean REALLY accept it, then it resolves quickly. If we accept it, then we can move on with it in our lives and remain productive.
3. Receive. Leslie taught me that I love being supported and loved. She let me open up and receive love and support – the unconditional kind – from the people around me. I like to think I am invincible most of the time. That I can be self-sufficient with my support and love for myself. Leslie has taught me that it feels GREAT to open myself and receive from others. In fact, it feels so good, I’ve gotten addicted.
4. I should not be invincible. I should not be completely self-sufficient. This might sound counter-intuitive to you. Bear with me for a moment. Somewhere along the way, I was taught or taught myself that I should be able to take care of all my needs, and all of my family’s needs. Whatever I can do myself and do well, I do. By myself. That tends to be a tiring trend. I love to paint, so I paint the house. I love to cook and bake, so I cater my daughter’s Bat Mitzvah. I am a therapist, so I treat my kids when they want/need a treatment. I am a good housecleaner, so I clean the house myself. Window washer, haircutter, etc, etc, I think you get the picture. Love doing it all, but is it exhausting? Yes. Leslie taught me (a lesson I had started learning before but never implemented…) that it is not in my best interest, nor my family’s, for me to do it all myself.
This is what I want to share with you today. Join me in thanking Leslie for these beautiful lessons. And read on next week when I share more about Leslie’s and my adventure together.
Sending Love and Serenity,
Devorah and Leslie
photo credits: Yehoshua Harow