If I could be the average of the five people I spend the most time with, I would surround myself with people who know how to laugh, who persevere, and who are good-hearted. Some of the people on my list are no longer on this Earth, and some are celebrities I will probably never meet, but it’s my fantasy list. I can manipulate reality all I like.
The first person I would choose would be my father, because of his sense of humor. Dad lived a hard life, and I’m sure he had a few regrets at different times, but he always seemed to bounce back from life’s hardest hits with a smile and a joke. The jokes weren’t always funny, but he always made the effort to laugh – and to make those around him laugh, too.
If I’m lucky, I’ve inherited at least a portion of his ability to see the funny side of every situation, no matter how horrible.
I would choose my big sister next, because she has all of the organization and initiative that is so lacking in my life. She never misses appointments or forgets to return a phone call; she sends birthday cards on time; she works an incredibly high-stress job and runs her household and still makes time to read and improve herself every day.
She’s Super Girl – but still human and likeable.
She’s . . . a Big Sister, even if she has told me repeatedly that we are the same age now that we are over thirty.
Christopher Reeve would have a place on my list, too. Really, he should be on everyone’s list. I’m sure he had moments of despair after his accident, but the other moments were stronger. The moments when he faced the facts about his paralysis and went forward with his life anyway. The moments when he moved forward help others with spinal injuries.
Next on my list is Nancy Gideon, one of my favorite authors. She writes her books while working full-time and raising her children. She also makes time to help aspiring authors any way she can. If I could just gain the tiniest bit of her motivation and ability to follow through and finish things, I might actually be published.
Comedian Mark Lowry is the final person on my list of five. Once again, I could benefit from spending time with a person who is able to see the funny side of every situation. But Lowry also has a deep faith in God and family; his unique way of explaining God’s word has helped me through many situations when I was full of questions and short on belief.
Lowry has also dealt with ADHD, and many of his routines are about the impact this condition has on adults and children. Whenever I get frustrated because my train of thought has left the station for points unknown, his comedy routines help me remember that my ADHD also gives me the gift of creativity and makes me who I am.
Dad, Big Sis, Christopher Reeve, Nancy Gideon and Mark Lowry. What a group.