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Before this school year started, we gathered together for a day of training and room preparation. During our all-staff meeting, our principal shared this video from TEDx Toronto.
After the talk, we were reminded that we have the opportunity to change lives every single day. We have the opportunity to impact the world around us with the words we say. And sometimes, we don’t even know it. These are lollipop moments.
Christy and I have a friend named Sara. She had one of these lollipop moments with me while we were attending Milligan together. I remember it was an especially sunny and unseasonably warm day in October. I was living in an apartment off-campus, but usually ate lunch with my friends in the dining hall. I remember that Christy wasn’t there for lunch that day and I happened to sit next to Sara.
I don’t know how the conversation started, but it somehow turned to the topic of getting engaged. Several of our friends had already gotten engaged. Others were teetering on the brink. Christy and I would fall into that latter category. Everyone knew we were going to ultimately get married. I knew it. Christy knew it. Our parents knew it. Our friends knew it. I wouldn’t be surprised if our professors knew it. Everyone knew it.
They just didn’t know when.
I didn’t even know when. I had a pretty good idea. I just wasn’t entirely sure.
So Sara and I were talking about proposing and getting engaged and how that changes everything in your relationship. After some back and forth, Sara looked at me and said, “You have to realize how hard this is on a girl. You know you’re going to propose. She knows you’re going to propose. It’s just not fair to her to put her through that kind of suspense every day. Just do it. What are you waiting for?”
“Oh,” I thought. “If you only knew…” and I did my best not to chuckle.
You see, I had already purchased the ring. It was in my bedroom. The only other people who knew about it were my dad and a co-worker at Baskin Robbins. I hadn’t even told my roommate yet. It was important to keep this information close to the vest. Word tends to travel fast on a small campus like Milligan – and this was before the days of social media. This had to be a surprise. There was no way I could let anything leak. So I didn’t tell a soul that was connected to Milligan’s campus.
I really wanted to tell Sara that I had the ring. It was in my apartment. And I was just waiting for the right time.
But Sara had a very good point. What was I waiting for? How could the time be any more right than that very moment?
So I left the cafeteria, bound and determined to make it happen. I went home and grabbed the ring. Matt happened to be home, so I showed it to him. I think both of us were shocked. He was shocked that I had bought a ring. I was shocked that this thing was actually going to happen.
It was a good shock. I promise.
Shortly after that, I left my apartment. I had a lot to get done in a very short amount of time.
A few hours later, Christy said yes!
Who knows what would’ve happened if Sara hadn’t spoken her mind. Christy might still be waiting for that ring! Sara didn’t know what kind of impact her words had on me. Two lives were changed that day. And we have our friend, Sara, to thank.
It’s amazing how one simple conversation can open someone’s eyes. It’s amazing how one simple phrase has the potential of completely rearranging someone’s life. It’s amazing how powerful our words are.
So that’s one of the many lollipop moments in my life. I’d love to hear yours! Please share them in the comments below.