December 14, 2009

Sunday Pause: Promise Yourself


Promise Yourself

"Promise yourself to be so strong that nothing can disturb your peace of mind.

To talk health, happiness, and prosperity to every person you meet.

To make all your friends feel like there is something in them.

To look at the sunny side of everything and make your optimism come true.

To think only of the best, to work only for the best, and expect only the best.

To be just as enthusiastic about the success of others as you are about your own.

To forget the mistakes of the past and press on to the greater achievements of the future.

To wear a cheerful countenance at all times and give every living person you meet a smile.

To give so much time to the improvement of yourself that you have no time to criticize others.

To be too large for worry, too noble for anger, and too strong for fear, and too happy to permit the presence of trouble."

~The Optimist Creed

I was in Grade 8 or 9 when my Art teacher gave us each an A3 sized printout of The Optimist Creed. It was on plain paper, in black and white with a decorative border. Thirteen years later, I still have it, although it is a little worse for wear. I can almost quote it by heart. In such a simple gesture that teacher has greatly influenced my life. Thinking back on who she was I am greatly inspired by how she lived her life and how she influenced her students. She taught us to be strong, independant, to appreciate beauty and to give 100% in everything we did for our own sake and no one else's. She taught by example.

On the outskirts of my home town on old sheep-grazing property she created the most beautiful rose garden with hundreds of varieties of roses, meandering paths and creeks. Visiting there one could feel (and still can) the love that went into creating it. By the time I was in grade 11 she had remarried and moved somewhere far away and I never had the chance to thank her. Nor could I realize then the impact such small gestures would have on my life.

Image: Butterfly in Bruges, Belgium, July 2009.

1 comment:

Emily said...

Mrs Pollard! She really was an amazing person. Love the picture!