The sun sets on another day...
When I was much younger, a long long time ago, not far from where I am now, my Grandmother shared a story with me. Back then there were no computer monitors, or fancy screens, TVs were tube and black and white, and the story she shared was on typewritten paper. I have wondered for years where that text went as she used it over and over to do Sunday School lessons, and to make people smile. The text was worn, with notes on the sides that gave her insight into how to approach people with the story, and to explain the message that goes way beyond the simple. The message can be a simple children's fable, or it can be a complex story about love, it depends not on the story, but the reader.
Years later someone published another version as a folk story, and in the process made it sad, so I present to you an edited, slightly more positive version of Fuzzies:
Once upon a time there was a village. All of the people in the village we happy and content and comfortable with themselves. There was kindness, love, compassion, and justice. Every person in the village owned a special bag that was unique to them, but similar to all of the other bags except for the spacial flair that made people unique. It was given to them by their parents at the age of 3 and it just was suddenly there when they turned 3, there was no explanation, but no question as to where it came from. People had faith and in their faith it was there. Inside this bag were hundreds of warm fuzzies. Well, nobody knew how many there were but they always seemed to be in the bag, and were always there when they needed them. Warm fuzzies were soft, cuddly, cottony little puffs that just seemed to be special. The coo'd and trilled and were a part of the person when they pulled a warm fuzzy out and each warm fuzzy was special and unique in its own way. When you gave someone a warm fuzzy, they felt warm and fuzzy inside. When you held your own warm fuzzies they gave you a special kind of contentment and made you feel amazing. People in the village gave each other warm fuzzies anytime they wanted to let someone know they were loved. When someone received a warm fuzzy, they put it in their bag too, and the fuzzies were just always there.
One day, an evil sorceress came to town. She saw that everyone was giving out these warm fuzzies from their bags and it made her jealous and angry. She transformed herself to be accepted and went up to one villager and said, “Why do you keep giving away your warm fuzzies? Aren’t you afraid you’re going to run out?" The villager spurned her but she persisted, "Woe is me, I gave away all my warm fuzzies and my bag was empty. I thought I would die without warm fuzzies until I found something that truly lasts forever." The villager became concerned and asked what they should do.
"Take this bag of cold pricklies and give these to the people in your village instead, and keep all your warm fuzzies for yourself.” The villager took the bag because he believed the sorceress’ tale. The next time he ran into a friend, he handed him one of the cold pricklies from his new bag. A cold prickly made someone feel cold and prickly inside, but there was something that made you want to give them away more. The villager told each person the story the sorceress had told him, and everyone became worried that they would have no warm fuzzies for themselves and would only have cold pricklies, so they went to the sorceress and asked for their own bag of cold pricklies. Once you had a cold prickly, you wanted to give it away to someone else as fast as possible. Soon everyone was unhappy as they gave away cold pricklies to each other and made each other miserable.
The sorceress was pleased. Her plan was working perfectly. Now the village was in a state of fear and panic. Everyone started avoiding everyone else so they wouldn’t be given a cold prickly. People hoarded their small supply of warm fuzzies and didn’t give them out to anyone anymore. But no one was happy anymore either.
One day a beautiful young woman arrived in town and almost immediately someone handed him a cold prickly from their bag. The young woman, recognizing the cold prickly, refused to take it. The villager was surprised and tried again. The young woman handed the person a warm fuzzy from his bag and smiled at the man. The villager was surprised, and a little ashamed that he had tried to give this warm young lady a cold prickly and instead received a warm fuzzy.
The young woman addressed the crowd and said, “Why do you give each other cold pricklies?” One villager said, “Why should we give away all of our warm fuzzies? Shouldn’t we keep them for ourselves?” Other villagers agreed. But the woman said, “Every time you give away a warm fuzzy a new one is created in your own bag. Don’t you see? The more you give away, the more you will have.”
To demonstrate, the woman had everyone put down their bag of cold pricklies and retrieve their bag of warm fuzzies from their homes. He asked everyone to take out a warm fuzzy from their bag and hand it to a neighbor. This they did, but warily. Then the young lady told them to notice that they all still had the same amount of warm fuzzies in their bags as before. People started giving away more warm fuzzies and noticed their bag was never empty. There were indeed enough warm fuzzies for everyone.
The sorceress was very upset and tried to interrupt the woman and get everyone to give out cold pricklies again. But the villagers didn’t want to listen anymore. They threw all their bags of cold pricklies into a wagon, and gave the sorceress a warm fuzzy. Foiled, the sorceress left town with her bags of cold pricklies.
The villagers realized they’d learned a valuable lesson. That warm fuzzies were meant to share, that what was in their bag was truly in their hearts. They knew now that when you give someone a warm fuzzy, they in turn will give it to someone else and eventually, it will come back around to you.
So the question is, what do you carry in your bag?
A simple story with a lot of version. What do you carry? Do you hold onto love each day and pass it around, or do you give people cold pricklies, and let them feel your pain and anguish? Do you lift people up, or something else? In the end, the question you will ask is are you someone who tries to be positive, or do you let negativity take you down a painful prickly road.
so as the sun sets on another day. Reach into your bag, pull out a warm fuzzy, and make a difference to someone else. No matter what.
Sleep sweet, love life, and skip the pricklies...
Oh, in case you missed the eclipse, here is a little picture I managed to get to come out ok.