I feel like a child trying to decide what she wants to be when she grows up. But I’m far past that stage. I’m at an age when most adults start winding down. 

Days fly, and I want to catch them.

But for me?  I have this persistent urge to keep winding up to squeeze as much out of life as possible. A sense of urgency rushes through me. I don’t want to miss the opportunities swirling around me, especially the chance to make a difference — to touch a soul.

As a stubborn optimist, I have always believed in hope, but it took me years to realize that dreams remain only vague wishes unless we grow into hope. Hope requires accepting your fears and imperfections and stepping outside your door or your head.

J.R.R. Tolkien captured my thoughts. It takes courage to hope. You must actually do something.

A picture of a door with a quote from J.R.R.Tolkien on the right:

On days when I feel like giving up or when my words seem to fall limp and lifeless, I keep going. I open the door, take a chance, and never forget my feet…and my brave heart


The days roll by.
I wonder.
Did I bring good
in kind, thoughtful words,
a smile,
a gesture of gratitude? 

If I  give one
small moment,
a slice of hope,
for one,
Did I do enough?
I pause—
Give your best, and that’s enough.

Why give your best?

On any day, we can only give what we have for that moment. Beyond what we see lies untapped potential waiting for us to grasp hope and take the next step.

My purpose—my why my vision traveling through many iterations— began with my first written statement as a teacher in 1992.  I add and take away words, but the essence remains:

“Inspire you to be and become your best.”

What is your best? Only you can answer that question, but I strive to help you see yourself as full of possibility. Children’s book writer and illustrator Sean Qualls has a simple way of describing his why. His words echo my intent.

“My objective, in my own small way, is to repopulate the world with words and images that help people reshape the way they see themselves.”

Words of hope to carry with you.

Note that “stubborn hope” requires action. Show up. Do the right thing.

Wait. Watch. Work. Hope doesn’t fall out of the dark sky. 

Hope appears when we take action toward our purpose.the bright white moon shines against the dark night sky with a quotation from Anne Lanott that hope begins in the dark days

Your best may still lie hidden. Perhaps today, you break the seal and unlock the door to hope and more of your best.

a photo of a small window partially hidden by green foliage growing on the wall and a quotation from Charlotte Bronte on the hopes we keep hidden

And always—

Be kind. Be brave. Be you.

Photos: Kathryn LeRoy