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To you with love

February 14, 2007

Four years ago today the courts stamped “FILED” in big red letters on my divorce papers and mailed them back to me. The irony of the Feb. 14th date was not lost on me. Irony has been — and most likely always will be — my constant companion. It’s God’s way of laughing at me, I think.

Feb. 2003 was arguably the worst month of my life. I spent most of it in bed. I dropped to 107 pounds. I looked ill. I was ill. That I even kept my job was due to the graciousness of my employer, who wasn’t quite sure what to do with someone so distraught. But he tried, and for that I will always be grateful.

Since that time I have felt more than a little lost on more than one occasion. My world changed through that experience and left me stronger and weaker than I had been before. For the times when I still feel like I’m flailing, I am grateful for the presence and help of friends and could never begin to repay the kindnesses shown to me and mine.

Today I found a post that Rob (aka Diesel) left and am grateful to have stumbled across it in my spam catcher. (WordPress doesn’t like outside links, apparently.)

It’s great timing, though, because I think that it’s grabbing me even more today than it would have if I’d found it the day he posted it. Life works that way sometimes. I hope it speaks to you as much as it speaks to me. It reminds me that Love is not just about couples or romance, marriage or sex (or even babies). It’s much deeper. Today, it’s that deeper Love I celebrate and wish it to you in bundles.

This is the text of the Commencement address by Steve Jobs, CEO of Apple Computer and of Pixar Animation Studios, delivered on June 12, 2005.

I am honored to be with you today at your commencement from one of the finest universities in the world. I never graduated from college. Truth be told, this is the closest I’ve ever gotten to a college graduation. Today I want to tell you three stories from my life. That’s it. No big deal. Just three stories.

The first story is about connecting the dots.

I dropped out of Reed College after the first 6 months, but then stayed around as a drop-in for another 18 months or so before I really quit. So why did I drop out?

It started before I was born. My biological mother was a young, unwed college graduate student, and she decided to put me up for adoption. She felt very strongly that I should be adopted by college graduates, so everything was all set for me to be adopted at birth by a lawyer and his wife. Except that when I popped out they decided at the last minute that they really wanted a girl. So my parents, who were on a waiting list, got a call in the middle of the night asking: “We have an unexpected baby boy; do you want him?” They said: “Of course.” My biological mother later found out that my mother had never graduated from college and that my father had never graduated from high school. She refused to sign the final adoption papers. She only relented a few months later when my parents promised that I would someday go to college.

The rest of the speech can be found here. Happy Valentines Day, everyone. I hope that love for yourself, your family and what you do fills your heart.

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4 comments

  1. To tell you the truth, I couldn’t read this Valentine’s Day, it just made me too sad. I’m glad you can enjoy the irony of it all in retrospect. But it sounds like now, that FILED was also FREE, which is to the good.


  2. Yes, in my case, FILED and FREE were synonymous. Sometimes I struggle with that, though, because if it was such a good thing then why was it so painful? Good things shouldn’t hurt like that, right? (Okay, so I know that question is more complicated than just “yes” or “no.”) And thank you for your response to the “get a life” post. I find myself wondering why I still don’t have it all together since I really have no reason not to. The question itself truly is the journey, and it does have much to do (at least for me personally) with truly wanting to suck the marrow out of life and not miss anything while I have the opportunity. I’m so greedy that way. But I’ve realized that it’s not even so much about adding experiences as it is about fully enjoying the ones I am able to have on a daily basis, even with something as simple as enjoying the photo you posted with the eggs in the nest. That was beautiful. Maybe I’m just grieving all the times I missed those same opportunities. Life is funny and strange and wonderful that way. Here’s wishing you the joy of hindsight and the ability to meet each day with grace and strength. xoxoxo


  3. Yay, you got it! I thought you would enjoy this. It really struck a chord with me as well.


  4. YAY! Thanks, Diesel. And thank you for being so kind as to offer your computer services. Dan the Man happened to be through that day and was marvellous help. With the two of you, I feel safer than you can know. Now, if you’ll just pass that credit card number along . . . . ;o)



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