I’ve written a lot about the connections we make with people as we travel, and how that is really the point of traveling. If you’re not connecting with people, not understanding people, there is no point.
That said, life sometimes is about the connections we make simply as people come and go through our lives. We meet people, fall in love, become friends and experience a full range of other emotions. The people you expect to play a vital role may not, but other people influence your lives for years to come.
I’ve spent a great weekend with one such family. In all honesty, I have no idea why this family has chosen to be so much a part of my life. I’m confident I’ve not given them nearly as much as they have given me over the years. They’ve been a second family—friends, parents, benefactors, inspirations and cajolers. If it weren’t for this group of people, there is not a doubt in my mind I would not be where I am today—both literally and figuratively.
For a few years we were separated but as we’ve reconnected in the last couple years, its as if there was never any time away. So, I just want to say thank you Simmons family. I am very, very proud to call all of you friends. Jim and Ginny, Dewey and Melissa (Blair), Cameron and Amber and Granny. You are all priceless to me.
The bigger point, though, is those connections we make throughout our lives will change and influence us in ways we will never expect. If you connect with someone expecting something in return, wondering what people can do for you or trying to get something, you might get it, but you’re missing the bigger picture. If you’re afraid to open yourself up because you’re afraid it might be tough, you might get hurt or it might not work out the way you expect, you may be missing something really amazing. Don’t be afraid to open yourself up to possibilities, you never know where it might take you.
Sorry if this line of thought was a little esoteric. It was my musing as I walked down the beach this morning on Topsail Island. A perfect day, not too many people around, the air was warm and the water felt good on my feet. Ironically, other than a couple “good mornings” I didn’t speak to a soul. But, when I turned around, I noticed my own footsteps in the sand. I snapped a quick photo with my phone before the waves took it away. As I thought about it, I realized we each make footprints every day. We just never know how long they are going to last. And when they fade from our vision, they don’t always fade from memory, and those steps may change our lives and the lives of the people around us..