Welcome back to another T Time! So the topic this time would be “Bread or Love”. You might be confused about what’s bread or what’s love, so basically bread means money and love just means simply love. But why is Read More
About a year ago I came across a girl on YouTube named Claire Wineland. She was 21 year old girl with cystic fibrosis who documented the ups and downs of her journey living with this disease on YouTube. I watched a couple of her videos and thought that she was an incredible girl, but didn’t keep up with her past those couple of videos. Then, in September of 2018, I heard she had died one week after receiving her long awaited lung transplant. In sad situations like these where life doesn’t make sense or seem fair, I tend to try and forget about the story to save myself from heartbreak. However recently, I came across Claire again amongst my recommended videos on YouTube. Her video was a part of a series called My Last Days produced by Justin Baldoni. Justin created this series to find out and share the unique perspectives of life from people who are dying. A more detailed description of his series can be found here.
I watched Claire’s episode, Meet Claire, Finding Beauty in the Sadness, and what she said brought me to full blown tears, “you don’t need to know you’re dying to start living.” Something so simple that essentially everyone knows, but so many people forget to put into practice; myself included. We all get caught up in the hustle and bustle of life that we often forget what a gift each day truly is; that each day is a new opportunity for us to make a positive impact in the world.
Hearing Claire say this lead me to reflect on what I want to be remembered for during this little life of mine. The fact of the matter is, we all have an expiration date and none of us know when it is. So I asked myself, “if I die tomorrow, what will I be remembered for?” I can only hope that I will be remembered for how I made others feel. In my 23 years of life, I hope I’ve made the people I’ve crossed paths with feel as though they are loved for exactly who they are and that they are innately deserving of love and belonging. I also hope I’m remembered for actively spreading and practicing kindness, as that is a daily goal of mine. Claire said that we have no control over when we die, however we do have control over creating a life that we’re proud of, and at this point, I will say that I am proud of my life. That doesn’t mean I don’t have room for improvement though because I always will! I feel as though we tell ourselves that we’ll have time to create this life we’ll be proud of someday. We tell ourselves that we’ll start doing things when we have the money and time. But how do we know we will have this time? Since Claire new roughly when her expiry date was (which not many of us do), it was obvious through the way she spoke how much she saw every day as a gift and was actively making the most out of every second she’d been given.
What if we all lived like we were dying tomorrow, like Claire did? What would you do differently? How would you treat others differently? I know this is a short blog this week, but really, it all boils down to one question: what do you want to be remembered for?
Rest in peace, Claire Wineland. Thank you for dedicating your life to serving others and teaching me how to treat every day as the gift it truly is. You are an inspiration to all of us.
If you would like to donate or find out more about Claire’s Place Foundation, you can check out the website here.
My dear friend Rosa (who also has blog!) recently recommended me to read a book called, The Hidden Messages in Water by Masaru Emoto. She explained to me how Emoto is a Japanese scientist who discovered that the molecules of water are effected by our thoughts, words, and feelings. Essentially, his research involves saying different phrases and playing different kinds of music to water, then freezing that water and analyzing the kinds of crystals the it forms. I know… sounds crazy but bare with me. I made a mini resolution at the beginning of this year that I would read more books, but also read books that I would never think about reading. Following our conversation, I immediately ordered the book on Amazon and had it in my hands within a couple of days. Little did I know the magnitude to which this book would blow my mind.
As I explain Emoto’s work, it will slowly start to make sense how this relates to kindness. For over a decade now, Emoto has been taking pictures of frozen ice crystals. He began taking these pictures when he noticed in his research that water “expresses itself in a vast variety of ways” (p. ix). As he was taking these pictures, he researched why certain types of water created certain kinds of crystals, and that’s when he started experimenting with saying different phrases and playing different kinds of music to liquid water then freezing it to see what kinds of crystals it makes. His findings were absolutely remarkable.
Below are pictures of frozen water crystals when he had a group of children say “you’re beautiful” a few times and several times to two different cups of water. The third cup was ignored completely.
Next are a series of pictures he took when people said “thank you” in various languages to different cups of water. As he notes in his book, they all resulted in crystals that were “beautiful and complete”.
Finally, when words and phrases that indicated harm were spoken to cups of water, no crystals formed at all.
You may be catching on now to how this all relates to kindness. However, let me explain even further. Emoto discusses in his book that the average human body is made up of 70% water. Based on his research then, the things that are said to us have a significant impact on our bodies and minds, as water absorbs the energy and vibrations from those words. He says that the key to living a happy and healthy life is to “purify the water that makes up 70 percent of your body” (p. xvi).
It’s quite evident that a huge part of kindness is how we speak to other people. We are taught from a young age that “sticks and stones may break my bones but words will never hurt me,” however I think we’ve gotten that wrong. Sure, we can brush off negative things people say to us, but based on Emoto’s research, those words do effect us at a molecular level. I believe this quote from his book sums up how his research relates to kindness beautifully:
“In Japan, it is said that words of the soul reside in a spirit called kotodama or the spirit of words, and the act of speaking words has the power to change the world. We all know that words have an enormous influence on the way we think and feel, and that things generally go more smoothly when positive words are used. However, up until now we have never been able to physically see the effect of positive words” (p. xxvi).
Thank you, Masaru Emoto, for showing us the physical effect of words through the magic of water! For the sake of the water in us, go speak kindness and love into someone’s life today.