Years ago I wrote for a newspaper. Things change, people move, kids are born, new challenges are met. Out of the blue one day I thought about the newspaper business and realized it had been more years than I could identify since I had been a correspondent.
I missed writing a column. The thought grew into, "I am going back to newspaper writing." The one small problem was I didn't wish to give up anything I was doing. My life was full and I liked it the way it was. The writing idea went on the back burner.
A few days later I found myself once again visualizing myself back in the newspaper rat race but I knew I would only be happy if I could report on true events which were uplifting. Our world did not have enough good news and I felt I should contribute in some way by doing some "touchy feely" stories. I knew that goodness begets goodness and I reasoned, "The more people read about the good deeds of others, the more they will ache to do the same." Earning a few more dollars was also very appealing!
I mentioned the idea to my husband and actually began recording true stories featuring random acts of kindness. After three or four months I still had not approached a paper with my pitch but one strange event was added to the mix.
Out of the blue I suddenly had a name for my column. "FOR GOODNESS SAKE" popped into my head one day and I knew it was the name of my new column. Now since I had not even been looking for a name for the column, I decided perhaps an angel had arranged for the name to whirl around in my brain. Well the thought made me feel good.
A year passed and still I had not moved forward on my goal. I had no idea my husband was making up for my lack of initiative. He called me into his office telling me he had something to show me. At the time I was not too internet sophisticated and didn't comprehend at first he was showing me a website featuring my idea.
"What exactly is this?" I asked him, thoroughly puzzled as I saw, the words "For Goodness Sake" sweep across the screen.
"Honey, this is a web site where you can publish the stories of others regarding heroic deeds and acts of kindness. People can send you their stories and we can publish them. People can get a free subscription and we can send out the newsletters daily or weekly."
I looked at all the work he had already expended on this project. I felt such a mixture of emotions, so disappointed because free subscriptions meant I'd be working for nothing and yet so grateful for his thorough and thoughtful efforts. Oh my, this was not the way I had pictured this at all. I wanted to do this for a pay cheque, for a newspaper! What do I say?
I asked Shawn more questions trying to understand exactly how the project would operate, all the while trying to hide my disappointment. At the same time I began having a conversation with myself. I think it was a bit of a tug of war over money!
I had wanted to share good news with the world because I felt there was not enough good news out there and here was my husband showing me how to do it! Did I believe in the project enough to do it all for nothing? Well, did I? YES, yes, yes, came the answering thought. "Yes, I believe in this enough to do it for nothing." I startled myself. I was more than surprised with my own reaction. Suddenly I had learned something about myself which I had not known. The almighty dollar was not as important to me as I thought.
Needless to say we went ahead with "For Goodness Sake" and it was a great success. Stories poured in and the subscription list grew and there was no money involved.
I've always marveled at that project, implemented by my husband. He had no idea that in designing, and suggesting the web page to me, he would be showing me something important about myself. He humbled me with his giving spirit and showed me a part of myself I didn't even realize existed.