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It is some of the stories of my childhood, which I can't share publically, that are part of my shaping. One I can is:

One time I came home from playing. I was around 11 years old. As I opened the front door, which was the kitchen (railroad apartments in NYC), my mother was washing clothes by hand in the tub (in the kitchen), she looked up, right at me, and said, "You know what you are? You're unique." I had expected a scolding. My family life was pretty dysfunctional (as I see it now). My reflection is that the heart is stronger than the environment. Expect love, amidst all else. God is truly everywhere. Over decades, care enough to understand. Listen. Be kind. Transformation can takes place, also, in a lifetime, not always as a coupe de foudre. Learn to love. Learn to forgive.