I am now a firm believer in the ability of a single moment to change you forever. And growing up isn't a steady, even, process. You can have a short period of steady growth, followed by a random spurt, followed by one of those vital moments that changes you so much more than the other two put together.
Sometimes these moments are terrible and scary. For instance my life has been very changed since the moment I saw my brother doubled over in tears in the hospital. It was the moment that I knew my father was gone, and the moment was dark with grief and sadness.
But other times, like today, these moments are full of unspeakable joy.
I have the great priviledge of being my best friend's maid of honor in her upcoming marriage. This is kind of scary to me because it feels weird for her to be getting engaged when I still feel so young. Today I had the opportunity to go dress shopping with her. Which was fun if only because I am a girl.
After an hour of looking and trying on she emerged from the dressing room in a dress that looked just about the same as all the other dresses, at least to me. But as she stood in front of the mirrors with the lights shining on her the dress seemed to look a lot more special to me, and not because the dress really seemed that different but because I could tell that she loved it. Her joy about the dress seemed to light the dress up, as well as make her look more beautiful than any dress could ever manage.
Then I realized something. As I watched her eyes fill up with tears, and as I beamed in approval at her happiness, I decided that the only thing that really makes anyone or anything special is someone loving them. You can make anything important by loving it.
My doubts about her age and her choice slipped quietly out of my mind as I realized that she had made him special by loving him, and she felt that he had made her special by loving her. Though, I loved her first, so she has been special to me for much longer than she knows.
It's like a song lyric I have always loved. "Happiness is anyone or anything at all that's loved by you."
The thing about these moments is that the moment isn't necessarily the most important part. It's what you make of the moment that decides how much it changed you. With this moment I have decided that I am going to be more generous with the love that I give. I've got a lot to offer people. And what do I have to lose?