5 Beautiful Stories of Connection from Goodnet Readers

Uplifting personal stories to start the New Year.

Jan 5, 2016
Special Collections: CONNECTING HEARTS

Illustrative photo by Shutterstock

During the past few months on Goodnet, we’ve been celebrating connections between people from all walks of life - relationships that highlight the human spark that ties us all together. From friendships that transcend disability and cross the generations to an hummus restaurateur doing his bit for peace, these stories made you think - and share some anecdotes of your own. Sent from across the world and across the web, these five stories show that when it boils down to it - we’re all one.

1. THE LANGUAGE OF CHILDREN

“When I was little I lived in Trenton, NJ. A polish family moved in on the same street as us, and there was a boy my age. I was so excited. Michael and I were about three years old. Michael didn't speak a word of English - his parents spoke broken English and his grandmother, who spent the most time with him, only spoke Polish. But I didn't mind that we couldn't understand each other. I used to just walk right into their house and grab him by the hand and bring him outside to play. I talked to him so much, and used hand gestures and played charades so that he could understand and learn. By the end of summer he was speaking near-perfect English. Unfortunately I moved away shortly after that, so I don't know where Michael is today, or if he even remembers me at all. But, I hope he is doing well!”
SHARED BY: Mari Matos via Facebook 

2. THE KINDNESS OF STRANGERS

“On a rainy April 4, 2012, my son, Cameron died in a single vehicle accident on his way to work after school . Cameron touched so many lives in his short time here on earth and he continues to touch lives today through the good works he left behind and the legacy he left in the hearts of all who knew him. He inspired others to appreciate nature, live big, dream big, embrace their fears, and to never give up. Cameron’s life plan was to teach Biology in Colorado after he graduated from college.

On December 5, 2015, we went to see our oldest son Marc and his beautiful family in Colorado Springs. During the visit, we went to the Garden of the Gods, a 300 foot towering garden of sandstone red rock formations. I have traveled a lot in my life and have seen many places, but I walked through these amazing rock formations in awe of God's beautiful work.

I had taken a picture of Cameron with me to Colorado, planning to leave it somewhere where it would stay untouched. I just did not know where that place would be. The Garden of the Gods was the perfect place. While walking through the gardens I looked for the perfect place. On the walk up, we saw some people rock climbing and watched them for a few minutes and then went on. They were still there on the way back and it hit me like a brick. One of the climbers, Heath, was taking a break and I went over to speak to him. I told him Cameron's story and asked him if he would bury the picture on top of the rock he was getting ready to climb. He was so respectful and kind. He asked if he and his friends could take the picture with them every time they went climbing and they would send me a picture of where they were. I was humbled by the gesture of this stranger.

I know that Cameron is in Heaven and Colorado does not compare in any way to the beauty of what he sees now, but symbolically - a part of Cameron will now stay in Colorado where he planned to live before he finally went home. Thank you Heath and friends!”
SHARED BY: Terri Fitzwater Palmore via email

The Garden of the Gods in Colorado Springs

The Garden of the Gods in Colorado Springs (Illustrative photo: Shutterstock) 

3. THE BINDING POWER OF ART

“Hi, Goodnet!  This is Drew Blanton.  I'm part of an international organization of artists with disabilities called VSA.  The VSA building I go to is called the North Fourth Art Center.  We have all kinds of backgrounds there.  For example, I'm from Georgia.  We all connect through the arts. A lot of us do both the visual arts and the performing arts.  That includes me. Happy holidays!”
SHARED BY: Drew Blanton via email

4. THE LOVE OF CHOSEN FAMILY

“In 2008, my mom passed from lung cancer. I took care of her for the last year of her life. After she passed and I moved home, her neighbor came over and visited, and told us that she had no money to pay her bills. We asked her to come stay with us - it was cold in the winter and her family couldn’t help her. It’s been five years and she’s still here with us.”
SHARED BY: Shirley Marciel via email

5. THE BEAUTY OF INSPIRATION

“If we knew how important we are, what might we change? If we knew that every interaction we had with others was special, momentous, how would we act? If we knew that every word we said mattered, what would we say? If we knew that our love was the source of healing, who might we love? If we knew there was a plan for us, what would it be? If we knew life meant more than this, what would it mean? If we knew that we all had the potential to be great, how might we help each other? If we knew how important we are, what might we change?”
SHARED BY: Lisa via email

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