I can’t even tell you how many times I have sat down, wrote a post about why I haven’t been writing, and then decided the whole thing was just too depressing and negative that I ended up just posting a bunch of pictures and putting off writing for the next day.
Maybe 8 entirely separate times?
I, just this moment, decided I’m not doing it. That’s all I’m saying about that area of my life and I’m going to, instead, carry on and pretend that everything is just fine. Fake it ’till you make it, right?
What I really want to do is something that actually makes me smile again: write a birthday post celebrating Maya on her 19th birthday (from LAST Sunday…not this past Sunday, but the Sunday before).
When I sit here thinking about what my favorite thing is about this sweet child of mine, I think the very first thing that comes to mind is this: Maya genuinely wants to help everyone as much as she is physically able to.
She is, honest to God, spending every waking second of her day trying to figure out who she can help, how she can do it best, and how she’s going to see whatever it is through that she started.
It’s one of the most impressive things to watch because she does all of that, and truly doesn’t want any acknowledgement for any of it.
She just wants to make other people’s lives easier and happier, at whatever cost it may mean for her and her own life.
I’ve seen her do it with our own families offering to drive siblings around for us, building and assembling things that we can’t figure out, fixing things that break by teaching herself how to on YouTube, booking airfare and rental cars for us, running out to the grocery store at 9pm so the little kids can have apples for snack the next day, and entirely changing her plans around so that she can be home with me on nights when Ben is traveling.
I know her friends would make the same argument. Maya would drop anything she’s already got planned for a friend that asks to have lunch with her, whether they “need” her or not. She would drive hours to go cheer on a friend at an athletic competition in Maine or New Hampshire. She would drive 30 minutes out of her way on the way to school in the morning just to pick a friend up so their parents don’t have to make the trip themselves. And, she will sit on the phone for hours talking a friend through a tough time…then, check on them first thing in the morning…then, have lunch every day with them…then, start the whole process over again a few days later…and, months later…until, literally, years later they’ve created such a bond that she’s at college driving home just to have lunch with them all over again during their free period at Nobles.
I’ve never quite seen anything like it. Because what I wanted to say, originally, is that she’s the best friend anyone could have.
But, it’s more than that. The girl just wants to help anyone, whether they’re her friend or a complete stranger that she runs into walking on the sidewalk.
I celebrate this life that she’s built now for 19 years where she makes it clear that her mission here is to help others.
Big and small, young and old, friends or strangers.
Maya has grown into the greatest example of what selfless care of others looks like and I couldn’t be more proud of the young woman she has evolved into at her beautiful age of 19 years old this year.