Bouquet for a Friend


There is nothing better than the encouragement of a good friend.

– Katharine Butler Hathaway


A few days ago, my husband and I had lunch with friends. Our conversation included chitchat about food, creativity, computers, weather and all manner of commonplace things. Afterwards, we shared lattes and more chat, about websites and the “work” we undertake, our processes and expression. I was happy to hear that others search for the purpose of their creative endeavours as much as I do. This kind of conversation lightens my heart and gives me hope. In the same way, after many years of creatively writing about life, I realize that my journal is also my friend and advisor because its pages also listen, without interruption or judgment, then help me formulate alternatives for moving forward.

As we drove home that day, ominous clouds raced along the horizon and autumn leaves chased each other across the highway, and as I watched them, I reflected on the pages and pages of unfinished writing projects waiting for me on my computer. They include keynote speeches, e-courses, workshops and three large writing projects in various stages of completion. What struck me was how, with a few words of encouragement from my friend, the spark of my enthusiasm for long neglected plans was fanned by cheerful words.

As I often do when a word pops into my mind during a conversation or in my thoughts, I search for it to learn its history and etymology. The word encourage, comes from a root word used the early 15th century, the Old French encoragier “make strong, hearten,” from en- “make, put in” + corage “courage, heart.” In short, my friend had given me a shot of courage!

Another word that comes to mind when I think of these friends and our lunch date is gratitude. That’s a blog for another day but suffice it to say, this word is older still, from Medieval Latin gratitude, and even earlier, Latin gratus, meaning thankful, pleasing. This is one of the attributes of my love affair with words. I can see the way a word travels through history. Courage and gratitude are timeless virtues that not only motivate our actions, but are also a consequence of them.

I offer you this bouquet of roses, my friend. I am feeling excited and motivated to move ahead. I really appreciate your love and encouragement.

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4 thoughts on “Bouquet for a Friend

  1. Ginette says:

    I love reading what you write, Kathie! I find your writing to be very thoughtful, inspiring and your words flow so beautifully!

    Your bouquet has been received with gratitude. I’m glad that I can be an encouraging voice in our friendship.

    1. Kathie Sutherland says:

      Thank you! So glad my words resonate with you!

  2. Sharon Baggs says:

    I guess I do not think as much as you do about the meaning of words – maybe only if I’m searching for a word to rhyme with the previous line ! Your word choices are so picturesque which I love! Miss the group for writing company !

    1. Kathie Sutherland says:

      I’m so glad you enjoy my words and find them picturesque. Words have such different purposes and that’s perfectly fine. Great to hear from you! We miss you too!

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