317 – November 13
“You leave home to seek your fortune, and when you get it, you go home and share it with your family.”—Anita Baker
Sometimes when I speak to groups, I tell my story of having come to Hollywood to be a star. I pause, look around the audience and ask, “Anybody recognize me?” There is usually a good laugh at that, but once a hand shot up in the back of the room and a shout rang out, “I do! I do!”
I looked out into the audience, recognized the speaker and said “Thanks, Mom!”
That was one of the endless deposits Mom and Dad made into my emotional bank account. Sometimes the “Bank of Mom and Dad” made deposits into my monetary bank account as well. They were always there for me, no matter what. I think they saw every play I ever performed in, whether driving to Santa Barbara or flying to Eugene, Oregon. The haven of home was the safety net that allowed me to leap out to catch the flying trapezes that filled my life.
In 1974, I was performing in Lubbock, Texas at the Hayloft Dinner Theater. The play was Love and Kisses and the star was Lyle Talbot, most recognizable as the neighbor on Ozzie and Harriet. Just before show time one Saturday night, I got a call from my Dad. He just had to tell me that at the office one day, he had mentioned that I was appearing with Lyle Talbot and his boss exclaimed that Lyle was his cousin! What a coincidence! We laughed and talked awhile and then Dad said, “Well, how do I get to the Hayloft?”
“How do you get here?” I asked. “Where are you?”
He said, “I’m at the airport in Lubbock.”
I couldn’t believe it. He had had a business trip to Houston, and thought he’d make a surprise side trip to Lubbock to surprise me. I was so excited! I told everyone backstage what had happened and that my Dad was coming to the show. Lyle Talbot spoke to the audience, told the story and introduced my Dad, having him stand up and take a bow. Dad and I were both beaming. We made big deposits into each others emotional bank accounts that night.
In the ebb and flow of life and relationships, sometimes we’re making deposits and at other times withdrawals from other people’s emotional bank accounts. Relationships die when the withdrawals exceed deposits. Some bank accounts go untended for years until finally the accounts are closed and the proceeds distributed to the winds.
Who’s minding your emotional bank account? Where are you making deposits? Where are you making withdrawals? Are you in the black, or are your accounts dripping red ink? Who are your depositors? Your lenders? Your borrowers? There is great emotional wealth in countless gold minds around you. Make some deposits today.
“I give and receive endless blessings of love.”
My dad left us a few of years ago last spring, at 93 years young. We miss him terribly, but treasure the memories.
It was fun to read this story again this morning and remember my surprise and delight when he showed up at the Hayloft Dinner Theatre that night. As you can see, dad was quite a character. The older I get and the more I read about the world, the more I appreciate how lucky I have been in my family.
Several years ago, a man read this story and said he was related to the owner of that dinner theatre, and sent me a photo of a matchbook cover advertising the Hayloft! What fun!
In this holiday season, take time to acknowledge and relish your loved ones – whether your family of origin or family of choice. Make sure all their emotional bank accounts are full – send treasure ships of love into their harbors, today and every day.