Yaya Rudo: Cherish what you already have
By Yaya Rudo
In the midst of your own struggles, it is powerful and healing to be able to bless someone with your skills, talents, time, experiences and relationships. Money would be good, but it is not always about money. Lemonade makers must pay attention to what they already have and be grateful for it. Remember you are equipped even with all those lemons around you.
A few years ago my cousin Batsi sent me a birthday message which I have copied below:
“Thank you for teaching me to brush my tongue when I brush my teeth. Thank you for looking after me in boarding school. I remember the time it got really cold before the winter season I did not have a school jersey, you asked your friend Emily to lend me her spare jersey. Thank you again and happy birthday”
I was so moved reading this message. The teacher and story teller in me saw many learning points. First of all neither Emily nor myself could remember this incident as it was over 30 years since High School.
Batsi is not a young girl any more, she has grown children and she is a business woman of note. Today she can buy herself as many jerseys as she wants including genuine labels, yet she has never forgotten this gesture. Note to self; it is true, people will always remember how we made them feel.
I did examine what happened and felt bad that I did not really deserve any special thanks or credit. The real hero was my friend Emily. I did not come up with the theory of brushing the tongue for fresher breath, it is general knowledge, and I simply passed on knowledge.
My mother, a nurse, was big on oral health and I simply passed on what she taught us. (Ironically over the years I have added Oral Health to a number of my talks). I did not sacrifice anything and give her my own jersey, I just knew someone who had a spare jersey and I asked on her behalf.
Just because lemons have been thrown at you, does not mean that you are of no use. You can still live a life with real positive impact. Yes we get it, life has not been so kind to you and I, but we still have abilities and relationships that can help someone today. You might not have the extra jersey, but you know someone who has. Knowing someone who can help is good enough, be the one to bring the two together.
You might not have the money to help others, but you can give your time and energy. Make a decision to use what you already have, volunteer at the children’s home, help out at the church, and get involved at the community centre or school. Do not let the lemons thrown at you render you useless and irrelevant. Focus on others and connect people, after all you are a Lemonade Maker.
As we search for waterfalls, the rivers around us can still quench a thirsty throat. The little you do today can be someone’s big blessing. I raise my glass to Lemonade Makers who focus and cherish what they already have.