I see the goodness in you when you ask for compassion even when your instinct is to punish. Even when it is clear that the person doesn’t deserve or even desire your compassion. It is hard to stand up for people that you believe are wrong, but I’ve seen you do it and it makes me proud.
I see the goodness in you when you risk your life for another life. When you travel across the world to help save people from war or disease or hunger. You might even step in front of bullets to protect a stranger in a strange land. I see the sacrifices you make for others and it rescues me from despair.
I see the goodness in you when you laugh. When you make fun of yourself. When you don’t take yourself too seriously and spend time being silly. When you tell jokes. The comedy of life is not lost on you and I love to laugh about it all with you.
I see the goodness in you when you explore. When your curiosity takes you into space or into uncharted parts of the ocean, or deep into the earth just to find out how it all works. I see your fascination with the universe and your drive to discover and it inspires me to do the same.
I see the goodness in you when you create. Just for the sake it. When you make the world your canvas or your song and let the quiet Muse guide you. It is an inexplicable thing to be able to create something new, something beautiful and you do it so well.
I see the goodness in you when you argue. When you are impassioned and scream your opinions. Even though people shame you. Even though people hate you. Even though people disagree with you. It is good to have passion. It’s good to be fierce.
I see the goodness in you when you change. When you are open to hearing the other side. When you listen without judgement. And then when you allow yourself to change. To become different, better, wiser, more loving.
I see the goodness in you when you work hard. When you buckle down and solve problems. When you figure out how you can help and what to do to make it right, then you go out and do it. Your determination is formidable. Your ingenuity is admirable.
I see the goodness in you when you are afraid. We are all born with fear. You are afraid of death because you love life. You are afraid of pain because you desire happiness. Those are good things to love and desire. I know that when you hide or hurt or lash out that you do so out of fear. It makes me want to be brave for you.
I don’t mean to be naive or obtuse in saying all of this. There are plenty of opportunities to acknowledge pain and suffering, but we don’t often talk about what makes us good. We are what make the arch of morality bend toward justice. Somewhere, even under all the drama and outrage, we are good. We are getting better. Sometimes it’s two steps forward and one step back. Sometimes we stagnate. Sometimes we circle back to dark places. But even in those times there are stories of goodness. There are humans being good to each other.
It is easy for me to slide down the slippery slope of negative thinking. To criticize. To berate. To get on my soapbox. It’s easy to want to give up on damned humanity and all it’s damned madness. But I hear stories of people being extraordinary. I read articles recounting amazing situations. I’ve seen us do miraculous things. That goodness is not lost on me. It can’t be. Sometimes I just need to remind myself. Sometimes what we really need is just to be reminded of our goodness.