Walking down the steps of my eldest son’s home, around 8.30 PM, after celebrating his birthday Shabbat, (a family tradition) my two granddaughters by my side, I began to say the little rhyme my mother taught me over 60 years ago.
I see tonight
Wish I may
Wish I might
Have this wish
I wish tonight
Mika, the youngest of the two, asked me to say it again. She repeated the words. That moment, magic, hope, prayer, call it what you will, was passed down to another generation.
Two weeks earlier that same grandchild introduced a topic at another shabbat table. ” Do you believe that if you share your wish, it won’t come true”, she asked. Her question triggered everyone around the table to offer their personal thoughts and beliefs on the matter. After each one of us had spoken, one of the family asked her what did she think.
She was quiet for a few seconds and then answered honestly. ” I don’t know.”
It struck me how clear and confident she was at the age of 7. She felt no pressure to give her opinion but was satisfied simply doing her own research. Those three words are so powerful.
I don’t know.
We live in a world where few, if any of our country and corporate leaders, are willing to admit they don’t know. Many of our teachers steer away from admitting that sometimes they don’t know. How often do we hear and read people saying things that they simply make up in order to look good?
H. Irving Grousbeck, an adjunct professor of management at Stanford Graduate School of Business and the cofounder of Continental Cablevision, says thinking of yourself as the person who has all the answers is a mistake
Those three words constitute a powerful answer that shows humility and self-confidence.
Ben Yoskovitz, entrepreneur, investor, product expert and author, says,”Some people won’t say “I don’t know.” They’d rather stumble their way through a bogus answer, pull something out of thin air (or elsewhere!) or outright lie. For some, avoiding “I don’t know” is an art. Think: politicians. Masters at filling the air with sound and carbon dioxide but not much else.”
The phrase ” I don’t know’, stands alone.
We’re often told to fake it ‘til you make it in fear that admitting that you don’t know what you’re doing will come across as a sign of weakness. Weakness, however, is saying you can handle something without the confidence to back it up. It takes strength to become vulnerable and admit you’re unsure.
My 7 year old granddaughter doesn’t know any of this. She is simply open to asking, hearing and considering what she believes.
That night, as I walked down the stairs of my son’s home, with my darling two granddaughter, I made a wish. It was not an original wish. It’s a wish I’ve made a thousand times before, in fact I find the more you wish for the same thing, the closer your wish seems to turn into a prayer.
I believe in sharing my wishes and yes I believe they all come true… one way or another.
May Love surround and protect my family, friends, acquaintances, communities and all those I have never and may never meet.
In the words of Tara Brach,
“Where there is love there is possibility,
Where there is possibility there is energy
Where there is energy anything can happen,
And where anything can happen
Something good will surely come of it.