“If loneliness is the disease, the story is the cure.” Richard Ford

By: Dee Ellmann

Hello, One Day Explorers! I am a newly retired Children’s Librarian and lifelong reader and writer. One of my newest missions is to support and facilitate storytelling among my fellow humans. I’m doing this partially for selfish reasons. I love a good yarn and a gripping story keeps me alive as much as food, water, and a roof over my head. I also know from my life experience how powerful stories are to each and every one of us. When I decided to see what I could do to participate in the One Day Movement, I immediately offered to be the story-gatherer (my term) to share stories of the people out in the world who are actively reaching out to help others in need, to solve problems which demand creative solutions, and who simply inspire us by their example to be more kind and compassionate towards each other. We welcome other stories of this nature, so if you have a good tale to tell, please share it with us by sending it to: stories@OneDayMVMT.org.

On a visit to Nashville with my husband and his cousins last October, we visited Abe Rivers, a Nashville-based musician and performing artist who grew up with our nephew in Mountain View, California. Abe told us about his idea for a new holiday called One Day to celebrate humanity. As I listened to Abe’s story, I began to feel a spark of a feeling that needed to be rekindled, a belief that I could belong to a positive movement amid all the dire, bad news that seems to be everywhere, every time I read the news or listen to people talk. I think many of us aspire to be part of a solution to the ills of the world which exist in tandem with the world’s wonders and miracles.

Stories carry individual meaning, but also connect us to our own pasts. I saw myself in Abe’s childhood story of playground exclusion which is one of the personal stories which led him to create One Day. Abe felt different and disconnected from other children due to his mixed race and religious heritage. Part of his dream is to create a playground where we can all play together as equals for just One Day, utilizing our creativity and learning the needed skills to plant the seeds of a better world. I think many of us can relate to feeling different and excluded at one time or another. Yet despite our differences, which do truly exist, we all have so much more in common than whatever sets us apart. We all belong to the same race—the human one. That spark that I felt listening to Abe is my own need to participate and be a part of a movement for humankind, to bring out the best in us, and to support each other with kindness, empathy, and love.

So here we are at the beginning of a new movement to create a national holiday called One Day, which is about recognizing our shared humanity and focusing on what we can create together. Will you join us? In this space we will share stories of individuals and organizations which exemplify One Day in action in our communities, our cities and towns, and our world. If you have a story to share, please let us know.

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