“Grow up,” said Ike

 “You live everyday at the beach, yet you take so much for granted. How often do you really stop to count your blessings? Is it enough?

Billy & Ruthi's morning shot

Billy & Ruthi's morning shot

“Do you walk each day along the shore, toes buried in the sand, dreaming your dreams or hunting seashells or solving the world’s problems?

“Do you offer your paradise as a gift to your friends and family from other places, so that they, too, can share the wonder?

“Are you amused each time you pull out your winter coat — realizing you haven’t needed a new one since 1973?

“Do you giggle with delight and sigh with gratitude that people save their money all year to spend their vacation in the place you call home?

“Do you go to work each day, aware of how blessed you are to breath the ocean air and feel the sea breeze — not just on special occasions, but always?

“Do you marvel at the sunsets each evening as the giver of all life on Earth melts into the placid Bay like molten lava?

“Are you responsible stewards of the gifts you’ve been given?

“Do you say ‘Thank you’ out loud?

“Or are you whining today because the very elements that created your paradise have now seen fit to alter it?

“Paradise — indeed all beauty and great fortune — exists only if you recognize it. This is why they say, ‘Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.’ If it is not beheld, it does not exist. If you ignore it long enough, like a child, it will pitch a fit to demand your attention — issuing a wake-up call you can’t ignore no matter how many times you roll over and put your head under the pillow. You cannot sleep through it.

“When you don’t grow consciously, it will be done for you, and it can be pretty uncomfortable.

“Resilience. Maturity. Wisdom. All these I have taught you now. But most of all, I have given you consciousness. Now, what will you do with it?”


Copyright © 2009 Alice Melott

Essays by this author can also be read by joining http://www.facebook.com/alicethewriter.

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  1. #1 by Alex on December 22, 2008 - 7:37 pm

    There is a reason why the poets told us to stop and smell the roses. That reason is life.

    • #2 by amelott on December 22, 2008 - 7:42 pm

      Everything old is new again. ;c)

  2. #3 by Tiffany Wise on December 22, 2008 - 7:38 pm

    You don’t know me directly – I work with Norma Vranken & have been following your blog after learning what tragedy our KW Galveston family experienced. Your insight continues to amaze me & often entertains me. Your attitude toward such a horrible experience is uplifting, engaging and thoroughly educating. If I ever have to face such a situation, I hope to have a tad (or more) of what you embody!

    If I were there, I’d give you the kind of great big hug you spoke about previously!

    Keep on keepin’ on!
    Tiffany – Fort Worth TX

    • #4 by amelott on December 22, 2008 - 7:42 pm

      AWWWW — Thank you, Tiffany! You just gave me a big one!!!

  3. #5 by Suzanne on December 22, 2008 - 9:53 pm

    Well said. We should all be so willing to open our eyes and hearts to the beauty surrounding us, no matter where we live. Thanks for the reminder.

  4. #6 by Alexa on December 23, 2008 - 7:27 pm

    The spirit of Galveston lives! My grandmother visiting from Louisiana survived the 1900 storm and I survived Ike with minimal problems. I hope to continue helping to support the recovery efforts. The people of Galveston are so resilient. Thanks, Alice, for expressing our feelings about our little paradise so eloquently.

  5. #7 by Mary on April 10, 2010 - 2:45 pm

    Thanks, I needed to remember that. God did not see fit to allow me to be born in Galveston but he saw fit to allow me to get here as fast as I could. Now I remember

  6. #8 by Terry "BOO" Darling on April 10, 2010 - 3:12 pm

    Being Born on the Island (BOI) having several Generations of predecessors who hailed from Germany and England and Scotland I have a great appreciation for the “island”. While the water is not as clear and the beaches may not be as white, the state of mind is like no other place I have been. It may be a “Texas thing” but most certainly is a “Galveston thing”. We all knew it was just a matter of time before a disaster struck again, it just shows how powerless we truly are in the grand schemes of mother nature or the Lords wrath. Galveston and Galvestonians will survive, they will re-build and most certainly they will remember the losses of life and limb for many generations to come.

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