tthe other side of the highlight reel

I’m embarrassed to admit, I almost didn’t invite her to sit with us.

I was in Provo, treating Gabe and Mary to lunch in the Wilkinson Center, when I spotted a friend of Mary’s from high school while filling up my water bottle. She’s the kind of girl who earned every award, won every election, has an Instagram feed filled with a cute boyfriend, smiling friends, concerts, parties…

and I just didn’t know if I wanted to hear about it.

Do I sound petty? I can be petty.

In truth, I didn’t think she’d say ‘yes.’ I thought she’d be far too in-demand to spend time with us. But she eagerly replied in the affirmative and followed me back to our spot in the massive, noisy atrium.

We weren’t more than a few minutes into the conversation, when she burst into tears, “I really needed some kindness today. Thank you for inviting me to sit with you.”

My selfish heart felt chastened. We talked and cried and confided and soon learned she was dealing with significant struggles at home. The conversation went long and before she left, we all exchanged phone numbers, hugs, and more tears.

I know, I know, everyone is struggling. But sometimes I forget.

And I know, trust me, I know, this blog has become nothing but a highlight reel. Maybe I should apologize, but I won’t.

Because amidst the struggles and the heartache and uncertainty, I want to record the birthdays and the smiles, the golden afternoons and bright corners of our life.

Lest you fear we are going through some horrific struggle, we are not. Only the ordinary problems of life. Nearly every day, I hear about something much harder a friend is going through, or I read the news. Still, at the end of this long, eternal winter, I’m just feeling a little worn, a little quieter.

Next time, I’ll post something from the highlight reel, but for today, I’m just reminding myself to invite that friend to the table, to text someone just because I’m thinking about them, to simply show kindness to every lonely human fighting the hard battle we call life.

March 13, 2023
March 31, 2023



  1. ellen patton

    March 31, 2023

    I love this post. A very good reminder.

  2. Anne Marie

    April 9, 2023

    Thank you for this reminder. You have such a beautiful, kind heart. Here’s to some lovely spring days there. Xoxox

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