“Compassion asks us to go where it hurts, to enter into the places of pain, to share in brokenness, fear, confusion, and anguish. Compassion challenges us to cry out with those in misery, to mourn with those who are lonely, to weep with those in tears. Compassion requires us to be weak with the weak, vulnerable with the vulnerable, and powerless with the powerless.
Compassion means full immersion in the condition of being human.” ~ Henri Nouwen
Back in the August 7th post I promised to tell you more about Debi Horton and I aim to keep that promise. For decades I’ve called her ‘Debi Horton Hears a Who’. That’s just who she is to me. In part, I suppose, because I’m wired a little funny, but mostly because she’s a hoot. A woman as hilariously funny as Debi deserves a special name. I guarantee you won’t find a funnier woman in Kentucky. Just look at the way she stands in the gif below with Jodi Stacy. Her body language screams ‘wild tale about something’. She’s got more jokes than Carter’s Little Liver Pills, but they’re not just wild yarns. They’re also a glimpse into Eastern Kentucky humor; how it has marinated and developed over generations. Debi is the finest example of the Hillbilly funny bone evolution as there ever was. I can’t be around her without snorting so much I become an embarrassment, even to myself. But let’s not get caught up in how funny Debi is because there’s oh so much more to her than rib tickling. She’s incredibly gifted in the arts, too. She’s a fantastic visual artist, creating gorgeous paintings and pastels. Of course, she hasn’t limited herself to visual arts. She branched off into beadwork jewelry as well. Perhaps Debi will be best known for her fiddling skills, however. Her partner, Mike Havens, has himself a bluegrass band, and Debi being a can-do gal, joined right in. Only a few years back she had never played a fiddle. She found her way around the instrument in record time, and now she plays regularly with the band. She sings a mean backup vocal, too. And when you finally brush away all this talent and funny business you find one of the kindest people you’ll ever meet. She’s never met a stranger. She’s inviting and open; generous of spirit and time. She is, as Stacy Yelton would say, a good egg. I’m proud to call her friend. Debi Horton Hears a Who: I wouldn’t take nothing for her. (and if she reads this I bet she says, “Wouldn’t get much fer me neither.”)