Category Archives: Motherhood

The Most Important Word in the World

At dinner last night, my insightful 9-year old son asked me, “Do you know what the most important word in the world is?”

To which I responded, “Well, I’d have to say it is love.”

He said, “That’s a good one, mom, but it is hi. Because everything good in this world, including love, begins first with someone saying hi.”

Wow.

So, of course, this got me to thinking. I love so many words, how could I possibly narrow it down to just one? And how awesome is it that my son already has it figured out? Kids can be black and white like that; it is a trait that is refreshing to those of us who tend to overthink everything from the benefits of hand sanitizer to solving the world’s energy crisis. This group of folks like to call themselves, “adults.”

So acting in the myriad of gray areas as an adult, to me, some of my other favorite words include: kindness, peace, respect, understanding, wisdom, mom, and patience. I could go on and on. I also read the other day that “huh” is one of the most common words in all languages. Apparently, every country gets confused and defaults to a simple, huh? So purely based on its pervasiveness, is the most important word in the world, “huh”? I sure hope not.

Oftentimes, words take on their power when combined and in context, such as: I do, thank you, it’s a girl, he’s alive, and it’s for you. But it is truly a thing of awe when one word says it all. A word that doesn’t exist on a grayscale, but in the beauty of black or the wonder of white. How a child would look at it.

So I invite you now to determine what the most important word in the world is – to you. Please share below!

Peace.

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In My Opinion

If you were born and are breathing at this moment, then you have an opinion. It seems as though the advent of the internet, forums, blogs, instant messaging, social media, and the like, have given a larger majority of people a platform on which to express their opinion. Right or wrong, good or bad, we now live in a world of commentators, posts, articles and pins that define how our perfect world should be if it were left up to our singular voice.

The other day, I was counseling one of my children and the words, “If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say it at all,” popped out of my mouth. This is a go-to phrase I’ve uttered frequently over the years, but in this particular instance, it seemed to carry a bit more weight than normal because I realized that my child was merely expressing his opinion. Therein lies the dilemma of having a voice and an opinion, and the proper balance of the two.

An opinion sums up a person’s view, judgement or belief. ¬†Inherently, there is nothing wrong with an opinion. Yet, you can voice your opinion to one audience on any given day and get a round of applause. Announce the same opinion to a different group and you might get vilified. So is there any safe universal territory when it comes to opinions? Unfortunately, the answer is no. And that fundamental fact is why we will never come together wholly as a human race.

As humans, we group together based on our opinions. Pro-life vs. pro-choice, pro-environment vs. pro-fracking, and so on. As for myself, I adhere to one simple rule when it comes to my opinions…they are mine and mine alone. Unless it goes against a moral code (ex. thou shall not kill), then my opinion is for me to live my life by; I do not force it upon any other adult – period. Just as my child has the right to an unkind word in his opinion, he does not have the right to make anyone else feel inferior, demeaned, or saddened by it should he choose to voice it to the world as a newly dispensed law.

You see, humans can’t come together wholly because of our need to not only have an opinion, but also because of our need to control others and force our opinions on our fellow mankind. We even force it upon Mother Nature. Whether it be through casual conversation or jamming it down someone else’s throat, our egos can’t let go of the fact that although we might have an opinion, it might not be right – or for everyone. Or even valid outside of our mouth.

Within the very definition of an opinion therein lies the conflict – it is a belief or judgement. As a belief, it is a beautiful part of the foundation of you. As a judgement, it can turn ugly and redefine you as inflexible and needing to be in control, no matter the consequence.

If we were to spend more time forming our opinions into tolerant, respectful manifestations of who we are, then there would be a lot less suffering and wars. Maybe leading by force and judgement is not the way to go. Maybe living an opinion sets a better example. Think about zealots solely praying peacefully vs. suicide bombings. How about pro-life activists showing a spared life becoming a life-saving surgeon vs. a picture of a unrelatable fetus on a demonstrator’s sign? How about working through the issues of healthcare with enlightened minds vs. shouting across the aisle like a spoiled child? How about it?

While negative opinions seem to capture more headlines, it is the positive beliefs that, when nurtured, are truly the catalysts for slow and sustainable change.

But then again, that is just my humble opinion.

Peace.

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