This past summer, I got to spend two weeks in NYC for ballet intensives at the American Ballet Theater. It was such a special time with just my Muma, and we did lots of fun things together: Empire State Building, exploring China Town, wandering around The Met, and eating thin crust pizza again and again at our favorite neighborhood restaurant. We even went to see several shows on Broadway. My absolute favorite was Wicked.
There is one song from Wicked that has lived inside me ever since I heard it. “For Good” is at the very end of the show, and it synthesizes the meaning of the entire story. In it, Elphaba and Glinda sing about their relationship and what they learned from one another. It’s an emotional song because the friends are saying farewell as their lives go in different directions; they realize how much they mean to one another.
I’ve thought about how funny life can be that we often wait to tell people what they mean to us. If I think about my work on social media, I try to comment, like, or retweet as a way to show support and care. That’s what’s so cool about this kind of work, you can show #ConnectedCare so easily! On the way home from the musical that night, it was like our taxi driver could sense that Muma and me were quietly reflecting on something important. We couldn’t shake the song and we talked about the words and the meaning.
As we were talking, the taxi driver offered that maybe this song stayed with us because we have a bigger purpose in our lives. He told my mum that she had eyes that “told a story” and he said that I had a “joyful energy in my body” (and I didn’t even do any front walkovers in his presence, so how did he know that about me?). As we listened to him talk, Muma whispered that it was like he had known us all of our lives. The driver reminded us that the world gives us gifts, and it is for us to decide how to share them. He shared that people will always “seek good” but this doesn’t mean they won’t feel pain.
As a side note, you should know that Muma and me are known for meeting the most interesting and insightful taxi drivers no matter what city we visit. We always end up talking about deep things, and on this night the taxi driver actually jumped out of his car to hug both of us. It’s true, we have great #TaxiKarma!
So, my work on LivBits is like a gift to the world. It’s not always a fancy gift, but it is all that I have right now. I think about how Elphaba says that Glinda will stay like a “handprint on her heart” and in many ways this is what I hope my LivBits do; I hope they stay in your heart and, maybe sometimes they take away a little bit of pain that’s in the world.
This week I thought about our NYC taxi driver when Upworthy included me in their “Weekly Dose of Good” roundup. UpWorthy tweeted out the list saying, “12 stories that will make you laugh, smile, fist pump, and just feel awesome.” Just reading those words made my #heartbeep! I feel so amazing to be included on a list with so many other incredible people and stories. Upworthy’s nod to me means that people care about my story. I want LivBits to be about #celebratingothers and sharing ideas that make people think and feel happy. But, mostly, I feel like it confirmed what the taxi driver told me that night; when you are #ForGood the world notices.
Keep reading, keep thinking, and, thank you for following LivBits.