Monday, December 17, 2012

With Eyes Open

It's not often that I come here to use my voice, so to speak.  In fact, I don't think I've done that since my very first blog post.  But today is different.  Today, I actually have something to say.

My husband will tell you that when I break a nail, the whole world shuts down.  I've eased up on my nail break meltdowns over the past few months ... as long as the break doesn't happen to my famous hand.  I mean, my left hand is my blogging hand, right?!  Well, last week I freaked out because I cracked one of my famous nails.  It didn't break though, but still, I was panic stricken.  

And then came Friday.

The day when we all heard whispers of a tragedy and turned to our computers and televisions to watch the unthinkable unfold.  There was so much to question, so much to speculate about, and so very much to grieve for.  I could not take my eyes away from the news, as I'm sure was the case for so many of you.  All I could think about were those sweet little angels and how afraid they must have been, and about the parents and their frantic drives from work and home, all the while praying and hoping against hope.  I can not even imagine having to hear the news of my child's passing.  I don't think any of us truly can.  Also, the devoted educators, who are so often such unsung heros in our children's lives.  It's nothing short of senseless.

I am in the frequent habit of clicking my thumb nails against my other nails when I am focusing on something.  Through tears, I happened to look down at my left hand as I did this, and I stopped on my cracked nail.  I quickly thought back to how upset I was when I cracked it.  And then I had to scold myself.  What a silly thing to be so upset about.  A cracked nail?  Honestly, Nicole.  At that moment, I was utterly ashamed of myself.  

By the next day I still hadn't patched my nail.  It just felt so petty to me.  And yes, I very much understand that, technically speaking, my nails are my livelihood in so many ways.  But I sat down and grabbed my clippers, and cut every single nail completely off.  My finger tips are so tender, and I can't even type properly now.  But they'll grow back.  Eventually, they will come back.  

It may not make sense and it may seem like a silly thing to do, but in actuality, it was a way of getting rid of my own silliness.  There are so many people who are dealing with a nightmare brought to life.  The realization of that brings your true concerns to light.  My concerns are for my family, and all of the people I love so very dearly ... my concerns are not for my nails.  So I let them go.

I will, of course, continue to do my nails, and blog, and produce Elixir.  But it won't be my entire life.  I'm going to take more time to enjoy the little things in life, and most importantly, the big things.  

I don't know what epiphanies this may have brought to the surface for many of us, but I do hope, through the sadness, grief, and prayers, that eyes were opened and hearts were softened to all that is truly important to us.  Please feel the magnitude of this awfulness and do not use it for water cooler conversations.  It isn't gossip, it's our worst fear.  Remember the names of the fallen, not the name of the madman.  Pray for those affected, and love those around you as much as you can.  I know I will.


  1. I've done that exact thing Nicole when I find that I put more importance on something like that than I should. When perspective hits me in the face. Not silly at all. They grow back. I start sobbing again every time I think of those innocent babies. HUGS ♥

  2. It is amazing how a tragedy can really make us examine our own lives. I hope it will touch the hearts of others to make some good come of such evil! Thank you for sharing your thoughts.

  3. It does no one any good to compare our joys or our troubles to anyone else's.. but I think we all try to do something to make sense of these things. I wish peace and healing for you and for all touched by the Sandy Hook tragedy.

  4. u know what ? i really needed to read a blog like this . I have been totally totally obsessed with my nails and my nail art since over a year. and I keep justifying it by saying .. hey this is my work. its my livelihood.

    Lot of people have told me that i should give other things in my life a chance too, LOT of them . I can totally connect with every single word u said in blog.

    I cant believe how selfish i have been and how much i must have ignored these wonderful people and things that make my life worth living. I cannot even bear to think of anything happening to them, and yet i am too self obsessed to really show much care.

    Thanks nicole for this wonderful blog post. I really needed to read something like this .

  5. I'm heartbroken as is any one hearing about tragedy at a Connecticut elementary school. I am a mother two. I have been crying with you.

  6. I completely agree with you. :(

  7. Well said! I have to agree with both you, though to us a broken nail may seem like the end of the world, in actual fact it's not, and after reading this I too have decided "there are more important things in life". Like myself, my family, my fiancé and our furbaby, and my friends. Thank you for voicing this for us! <3

  8. This is why I follow you!! <3 A woman of quality! I did run out and grab my child from school and carry her to the car......just becuz I still could and never forgot how many people couldn't do that. Good for you for speaking up and sharing how you feel!

  9. Wow, this is so powerful. We are all changed by what happened on Friday, and we are all forced to look at what is truly important in life. The cutting of your nails is so symbolic and I love that you shared it, even though it may have felt a bit silly. It represents the acknowledgement of the petty things that sometimes seems like the be-all-end-all and that there really is more than that. Thank you for sharing your thoughts!!

  10. Two thumbs up...with or without nails. ;) Priorities are so important.

  11. I couldn't of said it any better. This world can be a frightening place, though I wish so much it wasn't.

  12. Thank you Nicole. We love you and appreciate your heartfelt words. My heart bleeds for these children and their families. :(

  13. It's a shame that it takes a horrific tragedy for us to realize what's important in life. I know I'm sure guilty of it myself, as many are. You're words are beautiful and have certainly stuck with me since I read them yesterday.


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