Tuesday, May 14, 2013
A Ministry of Hugs
This is a hard week. Nothing feels natural, somehow. Sure, the rote things keep happening but if it takes thought, I find myself back at square one. A lot.
One thing that's going to be easy this week is going to the Reception Honoring Councilman Calvin Ball at the Stanford Grill on Thursday evening. Calvin isn't just my County Councilman. He's a fellow Oakland Mills resident, an involved parent, and a friend. Through the years he's listened to my career aspirations, participated in my daughter's Simulated Congressional Hearing, advocated for residents at Village Board Meetings, read aloud to children at Tabott Springs Elementary School.
I asked Calvin what he's proudest of during his time in office. He had trouble picking just one thing. He supported funding for the addition of 76 sworn police officers, 137 EMS/Fire personnel, a reserve rescue squad, safety officer, and at least 25 new EMS vehicles including ambulances, engines, tankers and more. He is proud of the growth of his Money Matters Fair (financial literacy) over the years, his support for education including all day kindergarten, headstart, k-12, and community college.
I think what sums it all up is this: what he enjoys most is empowering others, giving voice to the voiceless and making our community a better place for his children and their generation because of his service.
There's one thing he didn't mention. If Howard County had a Minstry of Hugs, he'd be in charge. Calvin is a hugger. If you know him, you know. Now, don't be alarmed. He doesn't go up to random people and hug them for effect. His hugs reaffirm the connection he already has with you. They are joyful: welcoming and accepting.
After I lost the election he sent me a virtual hug in the form of a comforting note. His warmth and understanding came through clearly in his words. He reached out to me in a very difficult moment, and I won't ever forget it.
It's not too late to RSVP for this event. https://www.facebook.com/events/496465010420391/?ref=1 I hope I'll see you there. Don't forget to add a little red to your outfit. And be prepared to hug. Because we all need a hug right now. If Howard County doesn't have a Mininstry of Hugs, I say now is the time to start one.