Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Week 11: Listen For The Inspiration

Week 10 is in the bank.

Today, we are at 424,000 pennies (or $4,224.00). Listen up and feel the inspiration for week 11

"Most folks underestimate listening. Its so "passive". "Don't just sit there, do something," "Time is a wastin," "Time is money, " "I have not got all day, get on with it." These are all things that I believe most of us heard growing up. To just sit there is a sign of weakness or laziness, but to be heard is all that most people need sometimes. But its scary to listen because you might hear something that you might not be prepared for. You might hear something that makes you cry. You might here something that you know is true, but you never had the courage to say outloud.

I learned about listening when I was a kid listening to my mom and dad. My mom was a very unhappy person and I remember as a kid listening about the things that made her sad. She was sad she married to my father. She didn't feel that he spent anytime with her, she felt that he worked too much, she felt that he didn't want her to go out with her friends. He wanted to keep her at home barefoot and pregnant. She was sad she quit nursing school once she met my dad. I remember listening to her and watching her cry feeling so sad for her. "I'm sorry, mom," I would say, "No, you are right, you don't deserve to be treated that way. You deserve better than that." I remember listening to my dad. I remember one afternoon, clear as day, like if it was yesterday. My mom, brother and sister had gone out for the day and I stayed home with my dad. My dad had a record that he was given at work of the speeches of Martin Luther King. I think it was his greatest speeches and the album was sponsored by some liquor company. Well, my put the record on and laid down on the floor in my room. I sat down against the wall and we just listened to these speeches, over and over, all afternoon. "He was a great man," I remember my dad saying.

I remember listening to both my mom and my dad and I remember them not being able to listen to one another. I think that even as a kid I thought how ironic it all was. They didn't feel that anyone was listening to them, but couldn't hear a word each other was saying. I remember wondering if it would make a difference. If they heard each other, would they understand each other more or just get that much angrier.

Being listened to, was one of the reasons I loved acting so much. As a kid, I spent so much time listening to my mom and my dad and acting was my chance to be heard. I loved having center stage and people listening to me. If someone heard me, it would mean I was not alone. If someone heard me, it would mean someone cared. I never felt alone onstage. I always felt I was having a very public conversation with a few hundred of my closest friends.

Being heard is a powerful, powerful thing. It can change a life. It can provide the strength for one more day. It's the difference between "yes I can" and "no, I can't." I know that when you listen you can change lives and the most important life that you will end up changing, is your own."

You have been listening!

I know that because we are almost halfway to raising 1,000,000 pennies for Pyramid Atlantic. The pennies will help support art classes and workshops, internships, studios for artists and events for people of all ages at Pyramid. Its easy:
If all this penny stuff is too complicated and you just want to make a contribution, you can donate in any form of currency to Pyramid Atlantic by clicking here. I will add up your donation in pennies and include it in my campaign.

Remember to Save the Date for the Pyramid Atlantic 31st Birthday & Open House on Saturday April 14 from 2 pm to 6 pm. It will be a day full of activities in the studios, cupcakes and ice cream. Get your tickets today and tell two friends.

Bring your pennies on the 14th too and I will take them to my friends at Eagle Bank.

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