It really is beautiful…

Beautiful Ben

It’s true what they say about misfortune…that, while bad, it helps us to appreciate what we do have. Helps us to be grateful for the seemingly countless blessings we enjoy every day. I personally play the guitar to forget about things that bug me, and i recommend you do the same. Just pick up the best acoustic guitars for beginners you can find and start playing away.

But there’s more than that. More than appreciation and gratitude.

There’s beauty. And if we’re lucky, maybe a bit of awe.

Since my nephew’s accident, yes, I’ve had the opportunity to appreciate the simple joys in life, to be grateful for many small things that had gone on, unnoticed, for so long.

But mostly, I’ve been reminded of that amazing film from some years back, “Life is Beautiful”. I’ve seen thousands of people come searching for good news. Hundreds of people take the time to pray, and to reassure, and to give a bit of themselves that others might have it to draw upon, to hold on to, and to take comfort in when the road gets a bit rocky. I’ve seen dozens of people donate money, some of them complete strangers, not just because they know it will be needed, but because they’re moved to do everything they can, anything they can, to help.

I’ve also found myself thinking about my nephew more. About his easy way with people. About his kind (if a bit mischievous) heart and willing posture towards life. And about his ability to impact a place so completely that despite walking in a stranger, he always walks out with friends.

Are there less beautiful things about Ben? Sure, we’ve all got those. But don’t we spend enough time dwelling on them? I prefer to leave them to the ordinary moments. To not tarnish the extraordinary ones with remnants of our lesser selves.

The trick, of course, is making it stick. Finding, and offering, beauty in all circumstances. Making the ordinary look and feel a bit more extraordinary. That may be a few generations (or millennia) off, but it’s times like these that show me it’s possible.

No matter. Today, in this moment at least, life truly is beautiful.

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  • georgia cone August 10, 2012, 5:34 am

    Beautiful words,Jeb.Here are more.
    “If you ignore beauty,
    you will soon find
    yourself without it…

    But if you invest in beauty,
    it will remain with you
    all the days of your life.”
    Frank Lloyd Wright

    Keep the faith!

    • Jeb August 10, 2012, 6:43 am

      Very nice Jo, thank you. Wish *I* was on the eve of a long visit with the Cone/Sardonis clan. :( Have fun.

  • Clancey August 10, 2012, 6:44 am


    • Jeb August 10, 2012, 6:53 am

      Thank you Clancey.

  • Mark Hockenberry August 10, 2012, 8:41 am


    ah bro, I’m sorry to hear of the circumstances for your nephew. I’ll be keeping you and your family, especially Ben, in my prayers. Years ago, I had a life changing event that left me a paraplegic, I was seventeen, and now that was 33 years ago. This was not only a life changing event for me, but for my family also. Times like this can bring beauty into our lives when we pull together as friends and family. Your words say it very well in your posts. I wish for a speedy recovery and healing for your nephew my friend. ~Mark
    Here’s my story Jeb, God doesn’t make mistakes

    • Jeb August 10, 2012, 9:19 am

      Hey Mark,
      Thanks so much for your comment and support. And for sharing a bit of your story…it’s nice to connect on different levels. Truly…

  • Chris Mead August 10, 2012, 2:30 pm


    Your thoughts on Ben are truly beautiful. This accident has made us all stop and appreciate what we have and to cherish every moment of our time with family and friends.

    Thank You for all you have done for the family, lifting our spirits just a little.
    Love to Tessie, Jack, and Charlie
    Aunt Chris

    • Jeb August 11, 2012, 2:46 pm

      Thanks Chris, and thanks for holding down the other end of the fort. Hope to see you soon.

  • Becky August 11, 2012, 2:29 pm

    Jeb, you really are an amazing man and you have an amazing family. WE are truely blessed to have had you in our lives. I miss getting to talk with you and Tess daily for your deep insight to everything. Miss you all and please know we are praying for you all and especially for Ben.

    • Jeb August 11, 2012, 2:55 pm

      Now Becky, there you go with your hyperbole again. :) But I do echo your other sentiments, and we, too, miss being close…but the Bolin-Dickerson connection is strong, and one for which a mere thousand miles is no match. Your family is woven tightly into the fabric of our past, a fabric we use to clothe our present. You impact us daily in a million tiny ways, so we’re never far apart, not really.

      Thank you for your support of Benji.

  • Annette Sperling August 11, 2012, 4:03 pm

    Ben: May God heal you and fully restore your body. In Jesus’ name. Amen

  • Cindy Joers August 14, 2012, 12:23 pm

    Jeb, Once again, I am brought to tears. We are truly blessed. You said things so perfectly all I can say is prayers are working so God is listening and Ben is proof. Thank you Jeb for this website and keeping us all informed. It makes me feel not so far away. Love to you all. Love Aunt Cindy

  • Mark Hockenberry September 3, 2012, 5:40 am

    Hi Jeb,
    Just checking in to see how your nephew is doing, and I hope you’re doing well too buddy.


  • Kezang Dawa April 3, 2013, 10:57 pm

    wow,…nice post sir,…keep it up writing sprite!!!!
    from BHUTAN

    • Jeb April 9, 2013, 5:50 am

      Will do, thank you Kezang.