Happy Talk

Grandson Killian Carl delights in his first taste of solid food with Great Grandma Jean Grandson Killian Carl delights in his first taste of solid food with Great Grandma Jean

“Happy talk, keep talk’in Happy Talk

Talk about things you like to do

You’ve got to have a dream

If you don’t have a dream

How you gonna have a dream come true?”


            Lyrics from a song in the classic American Musical, “South Pacific”, I hadn’t heard or thought about in years, could be heard coming from the kitchen this morning.  My happy-to- greet-the-day mom, a 7 year cancer survivor, was singing to my 3 month old grandson, wide-eyed in his sling seat atop the table.  He was anxiously waiting to be served a recently introduced menu item— rice cereal chased down by soymilk.  He didn’t even know about the flavor vanilla, yet, but when the spoon dipped in the sticky cereal appeared, he’d begun smacking his lips and kicking his feet, just like he’d started doing when he saw us snacking or eating a meal together.  It was his “happy talk” time.

            The day after my mom’s last radiation treatment for breast cancer, she’d driven by a small local art studio, and felt a draw to enter the creative-friendly atmosphere of “Art & Soul”. From that time on she’d been going to art classes, discovering a latent artistic talent passed down from her mother, in consort with positive, uplifting people surrounded by tropical-colored canvases and an atmosphere encouraging exploration amidst a menagerie of other uplifting forms of artwork.  I was glad she’d discovered something to move her beyond a more serious life-threatening passage in life. In many ways this is still a “Happy Time” for her that works in consort with other activities she’s chosen, promoting her ongoing healing.

            I have to confess, I inherited my dad’s philosophical and melancholic tendencies that sorely need the balance and example of more light-hearted, “all things are possible” presences. The struggle to move forward with an optimistic outlook is sometimes more difficult for me because the struggle between dark realities and the light of possibilities is so raw and real.

It makes me want to jump into and hang out in the same places these “soulful” people are inhabiting with all their positive energy and intentions.  I am in awe of creative spirits and appreciative of those who provide “safe” spaces where life-giving expressions of personal truths can be found and shared.


            All of these small examples of “Happy Talk” beautifully melded with what a true friend reminded me of recently, on the topic of finding our way back to health and peace: 


 “…whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things….and the God of peace will be with you.”           (Philippians 4:8,9)


“In repentance and rest is your salvation, in quietness and trust is your strength….”

                                                                                                                                  (Isaiah 30:15)


And so, even as I am encouraged, I hope you too can go through today and those that follow, letting “Happy Talk” lift, restore, and sustain you…..and that the overflow would find a unique expression of creativity, bringing you and those with whom you have to do, into a better place.

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