No matter where we are in life, young or old, wealthy or wanting, healthy or not, each and every one of us has a life-changing event.

For some, there may be only one or two life-changing events. For others, there may be multiple life-changing events — each with their own lesson, challenge, joy, fear, stressor or even a feeling of freedom.

My oldest son experienced several life-changing events in the span of a few short weeks just after Christmas of 2016. I always give my friends and family something meaningful and personal for Christmas. This year, for my daddy, I had selected quotes and written personal lessons I had learned from him.

I wanted to create a different perspective for my son to see and feel how my daddy has loved, supported, cared and been present for me. It is this deep relationship and connection that I have had with him since his own divorce that has kept me grounded, sane and safe.

As you read the letter I wrote to my son along with my personal lessons about how positively my life has been impacted, I anticipate your memory will become full of people, thoughts and lessons that have helped you on your life’s journey as well.

I hope you will be inspired by the words you read and the feelings created by the sentiments I’ve written.

Dear Jordan,

I am incredibly proud of you for starting a new chapter of your life. Sometimes it’s not easy to get to where we are going and along the way there are things that can challenge us.

Your strength, integrity, will and determination will be the foundation of everything you do, every choice you make and every action you take.

You have the heart of a lion and I know you are on a path of success, freedom and liberation.

As my therapist always respectfully asked, “May I offer you a few thoughts?”

1) Believe in yourself.

2) Know you are worthy of having all that life has to offer.

3) There are no mistakes, only experiences that teach us lessons in life — what to do and what not to do.

4) Making a decision is the first step in taking action towards what you want to achieve.

5) YOU are the only one that knows what success means to you.

6) YOU are the only one that knows what keeps you safe.

7) YOU are the only one that knows what happiness means to you.

8) Feeling safe is incredibly important in life and for me, when I feel safe, I feel happy.

You have many people, friends. and family, who are here to support you, love you, encourage you and help you — with anything and everything you need. Even if it’s just to talk through things.

You know that none of us will ever judge you. All of us are here to lend our life’s experiences to hopefully help you navigate life as well.

We are not given a map to our life. However, we can start by having a direction to go. By making YOUR own decisions, you have begun YOUR journey. You are beginning your map of life and I’m confident you will get to where you want to go.

Keep in mind:

1. Take one small step at a time.

2. Remember with each step you are making progress.

3. As you make progress, you will become more confident.

4. As you become more confident, it helps every aspect of your life — self esteem, relationships and communication.

5. When you have strong self esteem, strong relationships and strong communication, you will gain awareness, knowledge and a clear vision for your journey.

I Love You,


P.S. As you read these quotes and my expressions of gratitude, I hope you can feel and see how much I have learned from my daddy. His love for you, like my love for you, is unconditional.


You’ll never know who you are unless you shed who you pretend to be.

- Vironika Tugaleva

You have taught me to be myself, learn who I am and find what is important to me.


All changes, even the most longed for, have their melancholy; for what we leave behind us is a part of ourselves; we must die to one life before we can enter another.

- Anatole France

You have taught me that change is filled with experiences and lessons as well as ups and downs. We are constantly changing and evolving and it’s okay to change our path when we need to.


We all wear masks, and the time comes when we cannot remove them without removing some of our own skin.

- André Berthiaume

You have allowed me to explore new opportunities and make my own way — through pain and happiness, joy and sorrow — always understanding that there is pain in growth but it only lasts a short amount of time.


You wear a mask for so long, you forget who you were beneath it.

- Alan Moore

You have shown me that you can only go so long and not be yourself. It is important to remember who we are and who we aspire to be.


Behind every mask there is a face, and behind that a story.

- Marty Rubin

I have learned that my story is important and that I am important.


I’m tired of pretending everything is okay. My tears are starting to show and my smile is fading away.

- Sapphire Miranda

You have given me the courage to be vulnerable and to trust you and those who I know love and support me.


Why do you pretend, when you can make it real? We like pretending to be someone else but the truth we just want to be ourselves.

- Ann Marie Aguilar

You have given confidence to just be myself.


Success is nothing more than a few simple disciplines, practiced every day.

- Jim Rohn

You have taught me that I can succeed if I am consistent and practice, practice, practice.


There is comfort in knowing that you don’t have to pretend anymore, that you are going to do everything within your power to heal.

- Ellen Bass

You have encouraged me to speak with honesty, live with integrity and always believe everything I want is within the realm of possibility.


Unless we base our sense of identity upon the truth of who we are, it is impossible to obtain true happiness.

- Brenda Shoshanna

I have learned how important it is to embrace who I am and find out what makes me happy.


Identity cannot be found or fabricated but emerges from within when one has the courage to let go.

 — Doug Cooper

You have taught me to have faith that everything will work out the way it is supposed to — if I have the courage to let go and let God take care of it.


Running away from the problem only increases the distance from the solution.

- Nishan Panwar

You have taught me to face my problems with courage and to explore all options when looking for a solution or an answer.


Running away was easy; not knowing what to do next was the hard part.

- Glenda Millard

You have supported me when I needed to get away from a bad situation and helped me with what to do next.


Some have been thought brave because they didn’t have the courage to run away.

– Proverb

I have learned when to face my fears and issues and also when it is better to leave it all behind me.


Incredible change happens in your life when you decide to take control of what you do have power over instead of craving control over what you don’t.

- Steve Maraboli

You have shown me what it is like to identify what is in my power to control and what isn’t. I am happier and more satisfied with my life when I do this.


When people are ready to, they change. They never do it before then, and sometimes they die before they get around to it. You can’t make them change if they don’t want to, just like when they do want to, you can’t stop them.

- Andy Warhol

You have taught me that some people will never change, no matter what and that is ok.


Courage doesn’t always roar. Sometimes courage is the little voice at the end of the day that says I’ll try again tomorrow.

- Mary Anne Radmacher

You have given me the courage to be courageous.


Courage is the power to let go of the familiar.

- Raymond Lindquist

You have given me the example that if you aren’t ok with what is happening, then you can walk away with courage and determination.


Whatever we are waiting for — peace of mind, contentment, grace, the inner awareness of simple abundance — it will surely come to us, but only when we are ready to receive it with an open and grateful heart.

- Sarah Ban Breathnach

You have taught me to be grateful for everything I have in my life — people, experiences and things — no matter what.


The first step toward change is awareness.The second step is acceptance.

- Nathaniel Branden

You have taught me that change is okay and it is a journey to accept and love myself.


It’s hard to be yourself in a world that wants you to be like them.

- Jeremy Limn

You have taught me that the best thing I can be is myself.


A little knowledge that acts is worth infinitely more than much knowledge that is idle.

- Khalil Gibran

You have taught me to be smart, given me valuable life lessons and helped me to be resourceful.


Change before you have to.

- Jack Welch

You have taught me the value of going within to see where I need to improve my life.


The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step.

- Lao Tzu

You have taught me that in order to get anywhere, especially in life, I need to just take one step, over and over.


No one is in control of your happiness but you; therefore,you have the power to change anything about yourself or your life that you want to change.

- Barbara de Angelis

You have taught me that only I control my happiness and it is my perspective and outlook that contributes to my level of happiness.


We must let go of the life we have planned, so as to accept the one that is waiting for us.

- Joseph Campbell

You have taught me to trust that there is a higher power who looks out for me and to accept what God has planned for me.


It’s never too late to be who you might have been.

- George Elliot

You have taught me that it is okay to make necessary changes or alterations in my life to discover the things and people who bring me joy and happiness.


Surrender to what is. Let go of what was. Have faith in what will be.

- Sonia Ricotti

You have taught me to get in the flow of life and allow IT to happen, with faith, trust and love.


If you are driven by fear, anger or pride nature will force you to compete. If you are guided by courage, awareness, tranquility and peace nature will serve you.

- Amit Ray

You have taught me the power of forgiveness but also to stand up for myself when I need to.


Diligence is the mother of good fortune.

- Benjamin Disraeli

You have taught me to be patient and to be consistent.


Much effort, much prosperity.

- Euripides

You have taught me that with the effort I put into something, I will be rewarded.


Your sacred space is where you can find yourself over and over again.

- Joseph Campbell

I have learned that the most important things are the basics in life — safety, security and shelter. You created a sacred space for us in the home we have.


The world is what YOU think of it, so think of it DIFFERENTLY and your life will change.

- Paul Arden

You have helped me change my perspective of the world and the perspective of my life.


You are a divine being. You matter, you count. You come from realms of unimaginable power and light,and you will return to those realms.

- Terence McKenna

You have taught me that I am worthy of love, my opinions count and that I have unlimited possibilities.


Only those who will risk going too far can possibly find out how far one can go.

- T. S. Eliot

You have empowered me to stretch my wings and that you are always available if I need help.


Beauty surrounds us, but usually we need to be walking in a garden to know it.

- Rumi

You have taught me to be an observer in life and to explore different paths as each one can hold magical surprises with new experiences.


Just trust yourself, then you will know how to live.

- Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

You have taught me to trust in myself and my intuition and allow it to be my guide.


Someone was hurt before you, wronged before you,hungry before you, frightened before you, beaten before you, humiliated before you, raped before you… yet, someone survived… You can do anything you choose to do.

- Maya Angelou

You have taught me to be strong, not be a victim and to always remember; there are those that are less fortunate, those that have less than me and those that have more than me. It is up to me to determine my outlook on life.


I count him braver who overcomes his desires than him who overcomes his enemies, for the hardest victory is victory over self.

- Aristotle

You have shown me the value of self-worth and believing in myself.


Take the attitude of a student, never be too big to ask questions, never know too much to learn something new.

- Og Mandino

You’ve always told me to ask questions, seek answers and don’t give up until I get the answers I need.


Be brave. Take risks. Nothing can substitute experience.

- Paulo Coelho

You have taught me to try new things and not be afraid if I fail.


Hope is important because it can make the present moment less difficult to bear. If we believe that tomorrow will be better,we can bear a hardship today.

- Thich Nhat Hanh

You have taught me to look at the positive in all things and that I can make a different decision for a different outcome.


What gets measured gets improved.

- Robin S. Sharma

You have shown me how to create measurable targets that help me get to where I am going.


Happiness is not something ready-made. It comes from your own actions.

- Dalai Lama

You have taught me that happiness takes work, positive thoughts and positive actions.


We are not human beings having a spiritual experience. We are spiritual beings having a human experience.

- Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

You have taught me to believe in a higher power and the power of prayer.


It does not matter how slowly you go as long as you do not stop.

- Confucius

You have taught me that I have to proceed and progress at my own pace. Just by taking a small step every day means I am successful.


Man needs his difficulties because they are necessary to enjoy success.

- P. J. Abdul Kalam

You have taught me that I need to experience both the good and the bad to appreciate the small things in life including successes.


Life is really simple, but we insist on making it complicated.

- Confucius

You have shown me that simplicity is what brings the greatest joy in life.


Certain environments, certain modes of life and certain rules of conduct are more conducive to inner and outer harmony than others. There are, in fact, certain roads that one may follow. Simplification is one of them.

- Anne Morrow Lindbergh

You have shown me to look for the small things in life — connection with people — those who love and support me.


Be brave. Take risks. Nothing can substitute experience.

- Paulo Coelho

You have taught me to experience life to its fullest, even if it means learning hard lessons along the way. Lessons (not mistakes) are what improve our journey in life.


Satisfaction lies in the effort, not in the attainment, full effort is full victory.

- Mahatma Gandhi

I have learned just in trying something that I have already accomplished half the battle.


Think of all the beauty still left around you and be happy.

- Anne Frank

You have taught me to appreciate the small things especially what is readily available to us every day in nature.

© 2018 by Amy Jones - All Rights Reserved

Author's Bio: 

Amy Jones is a personal growth visionary, international speaker and author who lives and breathes one simple philosophy: live in the moment.

For over two decades, she has inspired thousands of people; intent on helping facilitate their personal growth and self-healing process by creating opportunities for significant and lasting life changes. She is a self-taught space-planning and organizing expert who, from personal and professional experience, provides a 360-degree perspective to produce clarity, structure and achievable results.

Amy is a highly sought-after speaker and her series Getting Rid of Possessions: It’s Harder Than You Think has the highest attendance in the history of the Generations program at Methodist Health Systems. She is the author of Better for Being Broken and co-author of Break Through with Johnny Wimbrey, Nik Halik and Les Brown.

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Amy Jones