Power of the Dream (image courtesy of Unsplash)


During my meditation this morning, a man appeared in my mind I knew about 25 years ago. I’m reminded how he changed my life —changed my perception about what had been unfamiliar up until then.

In 2016, I wrote a series titled “The Ten Gratitudes” a collection of life lessons from ten amazing people. This could be the beginning of expanding that series, so I wrote it in that style. Now, back to the story.

I met Duke — immediately I knew I loved him. He was handsome, a bohemian looking and brilliant guy who attended law school. Duke had long hair wrapped in a bandana, a captivating Louisiana accent, and was kind, and polite.

He was ‘gentil’.

I like that word. Gentil: to me, the French rooted word implies nobility, graciousness —a peaceful warrior. The kind of man who’s statesmanship represents all that is good in people —for all people.

You want to know what it was? What happened that altered me? Simple:

He covered me with a blanket.

It was one of those chilly New England nights Duke was visiting my roommates and I for the weekend from New York. I was just getting into bed when, without any words, he came over and covered me in a warm blanket. In that moment, a humble and simple gesture, I felt his genuine care for my comfort. Immediately I relaxed — and slept well that night.

Duke demonstrated it’s OK for men to be nurturing and caring. Now I could feel from other men and within myself a nurturing touch —and I could understand my worthiness of receiving those qualities. It brought warmth and peace into my heart.

The message:  It’s OK that we allow men to be both strong and sensitive, fierce and gentle, to be both providers and receivers. We are all of that.

For this experience, I’m forever grateful.


Richard is an online writer for the platform The Power of the Heart and Thrive Global, creator of, No Fear Friday (TM), songwriter at Rick Eva Music, social change artist, partner of John, lover of sandy beaches, addicted to 90% dark chocolate, and has a bucket list that includes going to the Azores to feel his grandparents land. Buy his latest book here

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *