I received one of these cards recently and have some unresolved thoughts about it. It didn't exactly feel good. On the one hand, it was a sincere extension from a stranger to a stranger. We spend so much of our lives disconnected, and honestly, anything that might leave any one of us less isolated is a 'win'.
Still, there is something that feels ill considered that I cannot quite put my fingers on. Patronizing is one way I can read it: you (person with a card in your hands) think you get to say who matters and who doesn't? And then there's the question of "matter" which in recent years at least for me evokes "Black Lives Matter", a movement calling attention to un-examined racial bias and police terror against the Black Americans. This evokes for me some of the minimizing "all lives matter" response -- yes, all lives matter, and we are in an ongoing significant crisis against black and brown bodies.
I'm also curious, having seen folks hand these cards out -- if you are aware of people you habitually give them to, and people you habitually miss?
What about: "I see you." "Thank you for being you." or "Thank you for being" or "You made my life a little better" or "May you be well" or ??
I wonder if your movement might evolve to acknowledge the climate in which we are swimming?
I've handed out You Matter cards during the past 3 years. My favorite story is sending 24 cards last year to a niece in prison. She slipped them into the workbooks of ladies she teaches math and other subjects to in order to gain their GED for a high school diploma. I'd sent some to her in previous years and she'd handed them out to friends. She said this experience has been so good for all of them. For myself, I keep one card on my computer desk and a magnet on my refrigerator. When I share with others, I always give them 3 so they can share 2 (spreads the message even further). Congratulations and best wishes to everyone who participates in this wonderful campaign.
I am a recovering alcoholic and currently work at an out-patient treatment facility for the Veterans Administration. One of my functions is the orientation for people entering our program for the treatment of substance abuse. We provide each attendee with a folder containing much information regarding our program and the services available to them through the VA. The folder allows for the placement of a business-size card. I place a YOU MATTER card in each folder. At the close of the orientation I bring the card to everyone’s attention and proceed to explain why I have placed it there with the following words: “The reason I put this card in your folder is because my last act as a drunk was attempted suicide, because I didn’t think I mattered. And I want you, each and every one, to know that you matter. You matter to us. So please, let us do what we can, to help you help yourself get clean and sober.” I have distributed over 1000 cards in this fashion. Thank you.
For the past few years I have been given my cards to people who have helped me along the way thru my journey of recovery from drugs and alcohol, these same people also have supported me thru the process of moving away from abusive relationships and learning my worth. My addiction was fed thru abusive relationships, drugs were my only coping skill. Now, just celebrating 5 years in recovery this previous Dec. 23, 2018. I am a junior in college studying for my bachelors in human services, in October I also graduated a course with 6 certifications that has opened the door to my first paid position in the field of helping others. I now have 25 of my own clients, who are where I have been. Who struggle with self-esteem, self-worth, abuse, substances and are fighting just to get a second of sanity. This year I have decided to give my cards to the people whom I now support. Some of them have been too involved in their own negative experiences to acknowledge the meaning of the card, but I know they will one day stumble upon this card amongst their belongings, and it will make them smile. Other's have been very appreciative of the simple, yet powerful meaning of just two words on a card, "You Matter." Regardless, if my small acts of kindness are appreciated at that moment or not, I did my part by letting them know that they matter, because helping them, helps me. Thank you!
I received a stack of cards from a beloved co-worker. I went home that night and gave one to each of my children, and one to my amazing wife-all responded with delight. My children asked if they could have some to take to school, so i obliged. I arose the next morning and saw one of the cards laying on my phone, with all of their signatures! That night I also had the pleasure of hearing them tell me about the experiences handing the cards out at school-they shared many stories of how some of the peers(and even a couple of teachers) teared up at the gesture! Thank you for the opportunity to get involved! One more way myself and my children can allow God to use us to touch hearts! Thanks Kathy!!
Jez! I never anticipated the reception I would get from the You Matter cards. Unbelievable. For example, I thought a guy was angry with me for delaying the check-out line by distributing YM cards to those ahead of me and all cashiers. He followed me outside and I gave him one as well. Through tears, he said, "You have NO IDEA what this means to me today.. My wife is in the hospital dying and I'm wondering if I'm worth anything at all." After some other exchanges, we parted and he added, "This is a blessing. God is using you in this." I now not only hand out individual YM cards, I give 5-10 to them to pass on to others. So far, over 2500 cards given with unbelievable responses and even greater numbers of fabulous feelings of internal joy and happiness within myself. How wonderful for all concerned!!
I have been enjoying being in the community of Leadville, Colorado, which is a small town at the highest elevation in the country, 10200 ft. It is wicked cold in the winter, but everyone enjoys it since snow sports is what it is about. I found out about the Toy Drive for needy children and decided to participate. I dropped off 2 toys at the Medical Center, which was collecting all items to later be distributed at a holiday party for all citizens. I posed with the receptionist who collected the gifts as I gave her the You Matter card. She was very delighted to get it and willing posed for our picture.
Last week, I was leaving You Matter cards in random locations at my job. )I work in a retirement community)
I put one in a secrion where my coworker takes care of. She asked if I put it there. At first I said no but told her yes. It was for her. She thanked me. At the end of the shift, she told me "of all days to get something like this, today meant so much". It was the anniversary of her mothers passing. I began to cry and said I was sorry for her loss. She said she didnt mean to make me cry but she wanted me to know it helped her through the day.
At church Sunday, a woman and I bumped into each other in the crowded foyer, after the service. She was carrying a woven tray of multicolored Peace Cranes, and said "Since I bumped into you it must mean I'm to give you one of these peace cranes I made." So I chose a purple one (of course), and I said, "And I want to give you this card" and gave her a You Matter card. She was really touched and it felt so good to be sharing with each other.
I'd also given cards to the minister, the pianist and the woman who led the morning meditation. Oh yes, and to the woman next to me, who was so welcoming and friendly to me. This was only my 3rd time at this church.
This is such fun and so heart-warming!
And a wonderful way to connect with people at a new spiritual center.
I have been donating blankets and cozy warm wraps around town this holiday season. Several of my cards were placed with donated blankets and given to a local dialysis center.
Another blanket with card was 'secretly' placed on the steps of a fire truck in the parking lot where the firemen were eating lunch.
One of the pharmacy aides at our local CVS was gifted a wrap and card. Her mouth literally dropped open when she saw the YOU MATTER card because our relationship was not the friendliest a while back. I simply said that I appreciate her. She was too touched to even speak. A little kindness goes a long way. And in the end we all just really want the same simple thing...to know that WE MATTER ♥♥♥
I worked as a cashier for a long time in a high end grocery store in my town. Most customers are elderly, well off, or both. Some days are hard. You get yelled at, looked down on, humiliated. The number of people that told me my job was nothing and I was useless was overwhelming, it wears on you. I will never forget a woman early in the job who was very friendly, asked how my day was and wanted to know the answer. At the end of the transaction, she handed me a You Matter card. I cried when she walked away. In a job where you're called stupid and useless and expected to smile, I had never had something so kind happen. In the two years I was there I had this woman a few times. She always gave me a card, and it always made my day. Reminded me the world could be kind. I only ever kept the first one I got, it stays in my wallet. Every other one id give to fellow cashiers. The impact these had on us is other worldly.
You Matter 2018, so far my favorite You Matter person is one of my Doctors. I love to study genealogy people's background and the history of countries. Things that would enhance the person to be extraordinary in his profession. My health has its challenges, but so do others. Wise people seek strength from a higher being.
My strength comes from the Lord sometimes. I have to “be still” stay still and focus hard on my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. But for today during one of the periods of being obedient and not listening to the news. I was watching a movie and fell asleep. Never did I ever think I would hear that a bomb went into a house of worship, and people’s lives I believe were lost while they were praying to their Higher God. As they were honoring him and their house of worship was invaded. One of my most important doctors God had used him. And I truly believed I am here today for his knowledge his spirituality and his dedication to his patients.
This doctor does not look at me as a person that is not worthy because of my physical characteristics. No matter how much he is in a rush to help others he acknowledges me as someone worthy of his time. I turned over in the bed and I said what they say about bombing, “No, no, I didn't hear that right.” My brain started flying, my prayers started pouring, the tears started flowing and I said I know someone of that faith one of my doctor's I'm almost positive.
As, it so happened I was in the middle of being isolated from everyone's coughs and sneezes, etc. and knowing that I did not want (prednisone) not one more time. But I had an upcoming appointment with my doctor. He is an asthma and allergy specialist that has been seen on television often. Yet he still stays the same as the day I met him over 11 years ago. But hist last name leads me to believe what his faith is. I had to meet with him and pour my heart out so that he could feel my sincerity on what happened to his house of worship. After my office visit I talked to one of the workers and said my hands are no good but I cannot leave here unless you can help me prepare a “YOU MATTER” card. One for my doctor and one for his wife they got to be perfect and they got to be laminated can you help me???
Doctor came in the office a couple times and you're still here. I tried to hurry I tried to move fast but it had to be done properly everything decent and in order and once I leave his staff would give him the cards that are a token of love from me.
After giving him my heartfelt feelings about what has happened to his people. He said it mattered to him what I said and as soon as he took his lunch break he was going to inform his wife. Oh Jesus – what I told my doctor who I consider very professional high standing, one with good morals no prejudgment a doctor you can talk to and negotiate with on your own behalf. No this was not about me there is only one God and the God you serve and the God I serve means as much to me as your God means to you and I am truly, truly sorry from the bottom of my heart. I left the cards behind, got my prescriptions, prayed and prayed some more, and I said “Thank you, Lord, for I know you have used this man to save my life.” I will never ever forget Doctor Thomas E. Klein.
Oops, I forgot to take a picture of the cards because the lateness of the hour the need for the office to be vacated so that the next patient could come in. I did not take a picture but trust me when I tell you if there's anyone in my life that matters on a professional level it is this doctor that my Lord and Savior works through as he treats his patients with the utmost respect. Dr. Klein, you are the person that matters, remember always you matter. May God continue to lift your people up and bless you may he heal the wounded hearts. Those that mourn over their loved ones are people like myself that are mourning with you.
I just want you to always know no matter what faith it is that I know I can reach my God at all times. I have never walked in your office and you have changed up on me where. I had to be concerned you have been the same person day in and day out for 11 years. May God continually bless you your family your faith and anyone associated and important to you and your life. I can hear your voice saying and Marian it's your turn. Dr. Kline, may God always keep you close to the bosoms of his heart. Much love and admiration for what you do for others. Thank you, Dr., YOU MATTER!!!! Marian Regina Snipes.
Hello Friends! I became involved with You Matter because my nephew attends Upper Dublin High School and he is a member of WINGS. I joined the marathon and have given out cards in my neighborhood and during my recent trip to Dublin, Ireland! I am thrilled by the reactions I encountered after handing these cards out! People are so pleasantly surprised that someone would take the time to give them a card. They are deeply touched and some have actually cried. Thank you for creating this marathon! It should truly be a year-round activity! I am so happy to be able to give You Matter cards out! It has changed my own life because I am making so many people happy! ❤️
I work in a Physical Therapy office as an Office Manager and couple of weeks a mom called to cancel her son's appointment. The reason for the cancellation was because he had been bullied on the bus home from school and didn't want to go anywhere. He came back today after the incident and I gave the You Matter card to his mom and told her to either give it to him or put it in his room discreetly. I hope he understands how important he is to his family and to the world.
So, this past Saturday, I was in Salado worth girlfriends and I handed a card to s police officer in one of the shops. He seriously asked, "what's this," looked down at it like only a law enforcement officer can, and laughed. Not the reaction I expected. As he chuckled, he said, "I love it." As he unbuttoned his breast pocket and tucked it within, he said, "that's a keeper." I agree.
I have been giving out YOU MATTER cards for a few years now. I had 5,000 printed and distribute them to friends for them to give to others. I was at church on Sunday and a person asked for more cards. She gave one to her granddaughter who had injected illegal drugs. Her grandmother showed me a cell phone picture. Her granddaughter was given a YOU MATTER card had been clean for some time and was rightfully proud of her sobriety. The granddaughter had YOU MATTER (with a heart in between the words) tattooed on the elbow of her arm to cover the needle track marks.
I handed a you matter card to a man, he smiled, looked at me, then handed the card back. I looked at him and smiled and he reached out and took it back, all without words and perfect understanding!
I voted this morning. In these unfortunate days of such political polarity, it was incredible to thank some of the local politicians for running and others who give of their time to volunteer at the polls. The smiles and thank yous were priceless. It means so much to make someone's day with just two little words. I have always given back by volunteering, but this was one the best and easiest ways to let someone know that they are appreciated.
This is my second year participating in the marathon. I’ve decided to stretch myself this year and really try to be intentional with my giving of the cards. For example, I just sorted my kids’ Halloween candy and sent the extras to our troops overseas. Included in the package was a YOU MATTER card and a note of thanks. I’m looking forward to the many other ways my family and I can spread some kindness this season. Thanks for providing such a great platform!
On November 3, I walked into a store, and as the clerk helped other customers, I felt compelled to give her my 3rd card. As I stepped up to the register and paid for my purchase, she handed me my receipt and I handed her a card. She held it to her heart with both hands and said, "Oh! Thank you for this! You matter too!" and she came around the counter and gave me a hug. She said it means a lot to her, and proceeded to tell me a story about customers who had come to her store in the past and asked for a discount, and she said their store did not offer discounts and the man was angry and said, why? Don't we matter? And she said, yes sir you matter, and EVERYONE matters, but I just work here, and my boss does not offer discounts. He huffed and puffed his way out of the store! We then proceeded to have a long conversation about the divisiveness of our country these days, and we ended up teary eyed, but we both touched each other's lives in just a few minutes! EVERY LIFE, AND EVERYONE MATTERS!