Sep 232013
 

from the book: Life Will Get You in the End: Short stories by David Satterlee

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Read or download this story as a PDF file at:https://docs.google.com/file/d/0B4eNv8KtePyKcDc5NS1HVmxGdjQ/edit?usp=sharing

The title is sung to the tune of: I’m Gonna Sit Right Down and Write Myself a Letter” – a 1935 popular song with music by Fred E. Ahlert and lyrics by Joe Young. It has been recorded many times, and has become a standard of the Great American Songbook. It is one of several songs from theHarlem Renaissance featured in the Broadway musical Ain’t Misbehavin’. – Wikipedia

I’m gonna sit right down and write my love a letter…

My Dearest,

I love you – Simple – Direct – Plain
It doesn’t get any clearer than that. It just is; as it was meant to be. Timeless and absolute. I own your welfare. Your happiness, peace, comfort, security, and joy are all mine. If they weaken, I am anxious to restore them; when they soar, I rejoice.

I love you – Complex – Veiled – Intricate

How unfathomable you are! Lover of sunsets – Mother of girls – Teacher of children – Maker of bread – Singer of weddings – Grower of gardens – Sorter of buttons. So much more. So much deeper. So loveable and beloved. I begrudge time for slowing my knowledge of you.

I love you – I hold you close. 
I cherish the time we share together; the mundane and the stirring. Your presence is a comfort and a light. Your touch is a thrill and a craving. I eagerly give you my being and my aspirations. I gratefully accept your gifts of life and time.

I love you – I watch you fly.
Nothing grows when held too tightly. I treasure the experience of your individuality and change. Your achievements are my triumphs. Your commitments are my gifts. Your freedom to act independently increases what we can share.

I love you – I need your attention.
I am sustained and strengthened by all that we share. Your love builds up my power while giving to you strengthens my foundation. I am an indomitable force when directed; I am a child when lost. Working, living, and loving together creates a wondrous synergy.

 I love you – I trust your absence.

I cannot be your everything and should never aspire to that. But, we are linked at the highest levels of relationship. This trust endures time and trouble; it smoothes our time together and it eases our time apart. Go; do what needs doing and return to me when you’re done.

I love you!

Jan 122010
 

Source: “Pursuing Human Strengths,” Martin Bolt, Introduction

“Change” reflects our ability to adjust typical patterns of behavior. The way we think about the ability of ourselves and others to change affects how we think about and judge behavior. Entity theorists believe that our characteristics change very little. They are more willing to make generalized character judgments based on fewer observed behaviors. Incremental theorists believe that we are more able to make desired changes. They are more willing to seek opportunities for and apply themselves toward personal development. An incrementalist would certainly be more likely to make an effort to change.

One’s attitude toward the human potential for change is reflected in the relative importance of ability vs. effort in achieving success or demonstrating intelligence. Albert Einstein sounds like an incrementalist when he is quoted as saying “genius is 1% inspiration and 99% perspiration.” If one believes that their characteristics are fixed, they may interpret poor performance on a task means that they are stupid, worthless, or a complete loser. Others are able to interpret failure as the mark of effort and see the need to intensify or redirect their efforts. One path leads to pessimism, learned helplessness, and self-reinforcing failure. The other path leads to optimism, sustained effort, preparation to seize opportunities, and self-reinforcing experience with success.

While positive attitudes and hard work do not guarantee success, they clearly promote it. Lucky breaks , social support, health, and even genetic gifts are important facilitators for many people who are admired as “successful.” The book “Outliers” by Malcom Gladwell makes a fascinating study of opportunistic success. Nonetheless, cultivated attitudes and habits about the potential for change creates an environment that rewards effort toward desired change.

“Parents and teachers can also teach students to relish a challenge. Doing easy tasks is often a waste of time. The fun comes in confronting something difficult and finding strategies that work. Finally, adults should help children value learning more than grades. Too often kids rely on grades to prove their worth. Sure, grades are important. But they are not as significant as learning.” (p. 10)