In my all-time favorite book, Simple Abundance: A Daybook of Comfort and Joy by Sarah Ban Breathnach, she shares this by John Tiernan:
"I am part of all that I have read."
Today is National Book Lovers Day. I wanted to introduce you to this favorite book that I am a part of after reading it for 18 years. I identify with Ban Breathnach's fearlessness and resilience, or as my visionary sister, Kat Tozier, would say an INDOMITABLE spirit.
Rewind: In 1995 Sarah was the mom of one daughter. She "blogged" before people even knew the word or the concept.
She shared daily snippets of wisdom to inspire people through her 365 days. As a visionary, Oprah saw her light. They chatted more than ten times on the Oprah Show. Sarah introduced her to the power of writing a gratitude journal. While now common place, back in the mid-90s this gratitude practice was sensational news! Remember this was long before the many who now espouse gratitude as an essential spiritual practice.
In 1998 my mom gifted me with Simple Abundance while I was teaching and raising my adoptive daughter on the island of Roatan, Honduras. For two years, I had no internet, TV, phone, or computer--not even daily snail mail. I visited the Internet Cafe on Saturday's. Islanders and ex-patriates like me just didn't have or seek all this "stuff." I was normal by island standards--abnormal by USA criterion. It was also just too expensive.
So imagine my delight for the daily ritual of opening Simple Abundance to see what Sarah had written “just for me.”
Her words were like a lifeline that tenderly offered inspiration, hope, courage, and more. Often there was the temptation to fast forward through the pages and read the next day's message-- even to read my October 14 birthday message. Sometimes I resisted. Sometimes I didn't.
Eventually, I disciplined myself to only read that day's Simple Abundance message. (It's called delayed gratitude I think.)
Now: I have gifted dozens of friends with Sarah's book.
If you’re in my life, I will happily gift you with this book so that you can meet “Sarah” and better know me. (I have three books in my gift closet right now.) It’s easy to go into any thrift store and quickly find the white and dusty rose-patterned book cover and scoop it up. Friends who join in me in thrifting adventures often ask me at the checkout, “Did you find any Sarah's?” I have to giggle. They know me.
Flash Forward: Someday I'll meet Sarah.
Someday I'll meet this visionary woman who I've only known through her exquisite words--yet I think I know a wee bit of her soul in my heart. Hopefully, we’ll enjoy a long conversation over a delish meal and walk near the water…share photos of our daughters…and re-tell stories about being fearless and resilient women while raising daughters, losing love, and being writers. I know there will be lots of laughing and crying.
(Photo: Banner Roof Top, Laguna Beach, CA)
And why not?
I am part of all that I have read in Simple Abundance for the past 18 years.