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We Can Do Hard Things
March 5, 2022

Time and Place

Time: Two weeks ago, on a Wednesday morning

Place: Parking lot of Bird Bay Condominiums 

I ran down to the parking lot to give Katie, my stepdaughter, the key to the pool where I would meet her and my granddaughter as soon as my pickleball lesson was over.  

It was finally swimming-pool warm, and the sun was shining. The windows of their red Subaru Outback were rolled down. Katie was wearing her straw sun hat and big sunglasses. Both were smiling, excitedly. As I walked toward the car, Lily yelled, “Nana! Come play with us!” 

This is a plea to which I never say no. Can’t. Don’t even want to. As I handed the key through the car window, I assured Lily I’d meet her at the pool as soon as my pickleball lesson was over.

“But why do you have a pickleball lesson?” she asked. If only I could play an audio of the way Lily pronounces, “But whhhyyyyyyyy?” It’s precious.

I tried to explain, “Because, Lily, I’m not very good at pickleball and I want to get better, so I have to take lessons and practice and learn to play better.”

A Hard Thing

Out of the Mouths of Babes

She insisted, “But, Nana! We can do hard things!”

Standing there on the scorching blacktop, I got chills. This child is three years old and once, at the most, twice I had encouraged her to keep at something by saying, “We can do hard things.” 

I did go to my lesson because pickleball has proven to be a hard thing for me. In the sweetness of her youth, Lily is yet to completely understand we can do hard things because we practice and are determined and we listen to advisors and we keep an open mind and–as I think she does understand–because we believe we are able. 

I want all of my grandkids and all little ones, and for that matter, all of us big ones to know we can do hard things. If only it could be that mastering the big kids’ playground equipment or a pickleball serve could truly be the hard things. 

Long, audible sigh.

But you are right, Lily, we can do hard things.

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  1. Thanks, Krista! And yes. We. Can.

  2. Wonderful story. And yes, we CAN do hard things!

  3. What a fantastic way to start this Sunday! Thank you for sharing. I will take Lily’s advice with me into this week.

    • Thank you, J, let me know how it goes!

  4. This is so precious. I could actually hear the whyyyyyy!!! AND…. Ohhhh the precious influence she already has embedded in her precious little soul…. Divine divine. Thank you Debi❣️

    • Thank you, Karin. You are so right, divine. And Divine.

  5. Loved this. I believe that accomplishing the physically challenging things helps to give us the strength, courage, hope and faith to be able to do the truly hard things in life.
    Thank you for this inspiring reminder.

    • Thank you, Judy. Couldn’t agree more.


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Debi Dixon

Debi Dixon

The Universe is guiding me on an incredible adventure: my Plan B. I write here to share bits of my Odyssey, hopefully to inspire, encourage, or extend the virtual hand of friendship.

When I quit teaching in 2014, I could never have imagined the growth I would experience through travel, writing, reading, therapy, and introspection.

I believe human connection and compassion will go a long way toward our healing, and the best way to connect and feel compassion for one another is through the sharing of our stories.

Thank you for joining me here. I appreciate you and may we grow together.

Inspirational Quote

“You must give up the life you planned in order to have the life that is waiting for you.”
~Joseph Campbell

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