My Day by Eleanor Roosevelt

Text Size: Small Text Normal Text Large Text Larger Text

Four of us, all intimately connected with public life for many years, two through our husbands, and two through their own efforts, get together every few weeks at luncheon to unburden our souls. Each time we do it, I think what a safe-guard it is to have any one anywhere in the world whom you feel you can talk to with absolute sincerity and with no danger of having the rest of the world knowing anything about or of any misunderstanding arising amongst you individually!

I believe that every human being needs an opportunity now and then to tell some one their passing emotions and thoughts which may have been pent up and therefore disturbing. If things have annoyed you, they fade into significance if you laugh about them with someone else, real sorrows even are lightened and joys are heightened in being shared.

We four have known each other for sometime but it is not the mere fact of the time you have known people that counts, it is something different, a kind of kinship of spirit that you may feel after a very brief contact with another individual. We laugh together a great deal but I often come away with the feeling that back of the laughter something serious was really on our minds and all the better for being off our minds. Two of us see people in great numbers purely socially, two of us see people in great numbers in our business as well as our leisure, but usually there is some contact with our work. The two of us who meet the greater number of people socially made one simultaneous discovery, namely, that we both preferred society which had as its basis the voluntary coming together of people because they wished to see each other and not the perfunctory side of social life which makes you come together, first and foremost, as a duty though it may by good luck often prove to be a pleasure as well. All of us like people, all of us like adventure but how we do like to reminisce about the past. I never cease to enjoy these meetings and come away with reluctance and always late for my next appointment.

E.R.
TMsd 31 January 1936, AERP, FDRL