Sunday, July 4, 2010


Today is the Fourth of July, one of the noisiest holidays around. An article in the New York Times this morning profiled a young veteran who lost both arms and legs in Iraq and his persistence and optimism in recovery. I wanted to tell him about a high school student in Portland who lost both arms and legs to infection at an early age - she is a dancer and shares his optimism and persistence. These are the kinds of stories that put life in perspective. Humans are amazingly resilient and the impulse toward life is strong. We are survivors together and as individuals, and our journeys are worth telling.

Yesterday I had a conversation with my daughter Elizabeth, who is developing her interest in early childhood education, about the importance of storytelling in early literacy. Yes, but storytelling is also important to each new challenge we face - we tell our stories of survival and we learn from each other. We learn compassion, persistence, and we learn the power of storytelling to hold back the darkness, to embrace life.

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