Complimentary Kindness


If you are like me, getting a compliment can make your day. Who doesn’t love it when they hear that color looks great on you, I love your shoes, or you’re a great cook?

For some of us, taking a compliment is not as easy as one may think. Emotional baggage and self deprecating thoughts are fun.

I am learning to take a compliment after years of thinking I was never enough. You know the feeling – when you are a teenager and feel like you are not pretty enough… strong enough… smart enough. Some of us never shake that off and as adults, it’s hard to actually believe we are worthy. Compliments are the cherry on our ice cream sundaes of self love.

It seems we give compliments so generously to children, but when did this act of kindess stop for adults? Does it make us feel vulnerable when we open up the door of selflessness in the way of making someone feel better without any personal gain? The world would be a more loving place if grown-ups treated one another with the same kindness we treat children.

Let’s start this weekend: If you think something positive about someone, tell them; simple as that. It can be a stranger who is wearing a cool hat or great pair of shoes. Maybe you have a dear friend who always makes you laugh (have you told them?). The feeling you get, when you see their eyes and smile, will be priceless.

Let’s pay it forward; one compliment at a time.

.“I can live for two months on a good compliment” ~ Mark Twain

Christine Macdonald


10 things that matter to me. In no particular order:
1) Humor

I am reading a book called Wishful Drinking by Carrie Fisher (yes, Princess Leia) and I have to share my favorite line in Chapter One:If my life wasn’t funny it would just be true, and that is unacceptable.

I love Carrie’s humor. No matter what tickles your funny bone, I h
ope you laugh daily and laugh often, especially at life’s little challenges thrown your way. Life really is hysterical.

2) My Love Life

Like most everyone, I’ve kissed a lot of frogs. Blinded by the delusional fantasy that those little green amphibians were the circles to my square, I pushed on. And pushed. And pushed some more. I pushed so much that at 41, my spine has been conditioned with each heart-ache-filled realization that I was fighting losing battles. It’s only after I stopped pushing that I feel liberated. This may sound like I’m trying to be a Prima Donna, but I don’t care; I want to be adored, cherished, and courted. Stature and wealth are meaningless compared to real love. It finally found me and I am basking.

3) My Friends

I’ve been a horrible friend. I’ve been a good friend. My circle of lovelies’ stay with me no matter what and that blows my mind. Through my own self-induced narcissistic tantrums for attention, they stay by me. I’ve cultivated amazing friendships through the years – most of them surpassing 20 years. To simply mark a list including ‘friends’ as something that is most important to me, is not enough. My friends deserve a parade.

Tattoos of the Friendship sign. This is a photo of just three (out of nine) of us who have this. I’m on the left (right wrist).

4) Cancer

Cancer is important to me because it’s not just a word anymore. To me, it stands for courage, love, death, sorrow, faith, triumph, suffering, and life. Cancer does not need to win, but she’s a fickle bitch who needs our attention and constant reminders how powerful she is. Because my cancer has the highest recurrence rate of any malignancy (over 70%), you can bet your bladder not a day goes by I don’t know I lucky I am to have caught it early… and by mistake.

5) Chocolate

Sometimes only the salacious ceremony of Dove Dark Chocolate sliding down my throat is all that matters.

6) Security

How is it that I work in the finance industry and I can barely balance my checkbook? Suzie Orman makes me nervous, although I know I could learn a lot from her. Maybe it’s my wild days of making hundreds of dollars in cash a night, maybe it’s the way I was raised (my mom spoiled me out of guilt for putting me in the line of fire for her poor choices), but I need to respect money more. I am learning to save, and that it’s ok to say those four words; I can’t afford it.

7) Time

I was just talking about this the other day. Donning a philosophical cap, I find it so fascinating that time never changes pace, yet drips by so slowly when you are on the treadmill and blinks in a flash when you hit the snooze button. One thing I know for sure; moms never seem to have enough of it, you never get it back, and I never want to take it for granted.

8) Health

Riding the coattails of # 4, I wanted to give Health due justice. I’ve been underweight and overweight. I’ve polluted my body, fasted for 21 days and have eaten only organic. I’ve literally been my own science experiment. Through my own experience, I will say that eating healthy and maintaining some sort of exercise program does make me feel better. Also, sugar is evil. I never knew how so many health issues were related to sugar. I say all this with cupcakes in the refrigerator.

9) My brain

I’ve had an interesting road with my brain. After a brief hospital stay last year (thanks to a prescription-trigger-happy doctor), I never want to take it (or science) for granted again. Sometimes I wonder if it’s me, or are the doctor’s going a little crazy? During those times, I buckle up and remember I’m not the only one who has off days. How do parents do it? Seriously. I only have myself to answer to, and it’s a balancing act at that. It’s amazing what a long walk and meditation can do for your brain, instead of pills.

10) Passion

What makes you thrive? What lights your ass on fire? I’m not t
alking about sexual passion here. I’m talking about what makes you – you. There is an old saying; ‘do what you love, love what you do’. It’s not about making money (although that would be heaven); it’s about not being able to do anything else. I’ve taken acting classes because I feel alive when I’m on stage, not to be the next Meryl Streep. I write because my fingers drive my insides and the keyboard is along for the joy-ride. I sing in the car because it makes me happy.

I am not sure it’s a Scorpio thing, or if everyone feels this way, but passion has always been my strength and weakness. Parlay my passion in to obsession and we’ve got problems, so I try to keep the balance on the corner of mea culpa and exuberance. It’s an uneven surface, but the neighborhood is never boring.

Christine Macdonald