Friday, April 01, 2011
I had been attempting to engage life for twenty-one years. Stan had been in the game for thirty-six. We met when the firm that he had been with for an appreciable number of years hired me. He was obviously well liked and respected by his colleagues, and comfortable with who he was as an Individual. He was happy with his life. I had never known happiness with life … but sorely yearned for it. He had my attention.
As I entered this new world, I carried with me a bundle of frustrations, disappointments, doubts, and fears accumulated in a world governed by the constructs of Fundamentalist, Evangelical, Protestant religion and a Family that was staunchly locked into a pattern that disallowed any expression of emotion or affection … and, in fact, had a distrust of those who were inclined to display any such thing. A rather unhappy existence for One who is, by nature, an Idealist/Romantic. So I was wide open for an example of someone living a life that complimented my Spirit’s core desires.
And there was this Guy! Stanley H. Menendez. A man who was exuberantly engaged in living life. A man who was unabashed in his expression of adoration for his wife and family. Someone who did not live under the yoke of “know your place and stay in it” that was the credo of all of my previous upbringing and experience. This guy quietly, and in a dignified way, projected Joy in living … passion for his family … and genuine regard and respect for everyone who he engaged in his daily walk. When Stan spoke with you, you had his total and complete attention … you knew worth and value.
I tell you, my Dear Reader, about this extraordinary fellow, because he is celebrating, this month, his 80th anniversary of life . And, though I am unable to be in attendance at the celebratory luncheon that his daughters have been so gracious and kind to invite me to, I could not pass up this opportunity to tell my little World about this wonderful Man. I hope, in my so-doing, that I can encourage all of us to be mindful, yet again, of the impact, and timeless significance, that we (most-often unknowingly) make on the hearts, minds, and yes, even the lives, of those who are touched by us as we go about our daily lives. Stan is still … all these years later … a Source of encouragement and joy in my life.
I am so blessed to have, as a permanent part of my life and world, a rare few Treasures like Stanley H. Menendez. Proof, yet again, that I am watched over by a loving and generous Creator.
Happiest of Birthdays to you, Stan … my Dear Friend. I love you.
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