Occasionally, I get a sign that I'm on the right path, and that my life is really good. This weekend, I received a couple of these light-filled signs.
As it happens, several years ago I was attending an after-hours party at a conference I was attending, and I briefly met Kim -- I say "briefly," because we really didn't connect other than to tell each other our names and exchange business cards. However, a few months afterwards, we reconnected via Twitter, and have been "Twitter friends" since, occasionally sending each other encouraging messages about each other's work, that sort of thing -- but we had never seen each other again in person. Then last Thursday, she tweeted that she was going to be in Houston for an event, so I sent her a private message, asking if she'd be up for getting together during any downtime she might have on her trip.
Happily, she was, and when I drove up to her hotel to pick her up and we finally met, it felt like hugging a long-lost friend. We headed to brunch at one of my favourite restaurants in Houston, Sparrow (because seriously, any restaurant who folds its dessert menu the same way I used to fold messages to my friends to stick in their middle school lockers before the days of text messaging was obviously going to be a favourite). We took our seats in a quiet corner, spread our napkins on our laps, and settled in for a good natter.
We had a three-hour lunch where we talked about everything under the sun, but most especially we talked about our work. Kim is an actor, writer and comic (and a brilliant one, at that), and her mission is to help those she meets realize their gifts, in much the same way that I'm determined to convince every single person that his/her Different is his/her superpower, whether s/he believes it or not.
Kim's also riotous good fun.
We offered each other advice, mentioned people and work we thought the other person should get to know, and generally encouraged each other -- because even when you're trying to do work that you love, sometimes you question whether you're doing it well, or even if it's worth doing at all.
So we're sharing and laughing and discussing and, really, talking through all of the challenges we face, when suddenly this little soul walked into the restaurant, solemnly and with great importance, and sat down at a table without even a sideways glance:
Are you kidding me with this??
People. It was like the Superhero Princess of Awesome Domination had walked into our midst, like our own personal spirit guide sensed a disturbance in the force and flew in, sitting right next to us to let us know everything was going to be all right, we should just stay the course. The best part was that her parents sat down next to her like nothing was amiss, as if they weren't the mom and dad of someone who possibly might be the most formidable 4-year-old on the planet.
I couldn't help myself: I asked the Superhero Princess of Awesome Domination (and her parents, of course) if I could take her portrait.
And with the ultimate grace, she obliged.
She was spectacular.
Our lunch, needless to say, was fantastic, and the appearance of the Superhero Princess of Awesome Domination was just the cherry on top. It ended all too quickly, but before we left the restaurant, Kim let me take her portrait, so I could include her amazing face in my gallery of uncommon light:
See? I was surrounded by radiance on Saturday.
So yes, with this much light around me, I'm feeling pretty good I'm on the right path.