Everyone understands what it’s like to have a pebble in one’s shoe. A small object that often arrives unsolicited and becomes a large irritant. If left unattended, it can create great discomfort and, eventually, great pain. Sometimes a pebble can be a good metaphor for life’s wounds. They might seem small but to a hurting heart, they can be paralyzing and severely interruptive to one’s journey.
Today, STA Theology teacher Dave Couture (also a St. Thomas Aquinas alum) presented a TOM Talk and answered the formidable question, “What drives me?” His answer (predictable to those who know him well) was… family.
The oldest son of Irene and Paul Couture, Dave grew up in a very close-knit family. With evident love and affection, Mr. Couture spoke of both his parents and shared stories that relayed their generosity of spirit toward others. He also spoke of “the best gift he ever received”- his brother, Joe. In listening to Mr. Couture’s presentation and in witnessing the obvious love that Mr. Couture carries in his heart for his family, it was easy to sense the depth of pain and suffering when he spoke of his father and brother’s passing in 2017. As if the sting of their loss wasn’t sharp enough, life added another “pebble” to the Couture journey when mom Irene was recently diagnosed with cancer.
After settling his mother into her first round of chemotherapy this morning, Mr. Couture came to STA to remind our community of the things he values most: family, yes, but also compassion, joy, kindness. These virtues emanate from Mr. Dave Couture every single day. Room 301 is a place where any member of the St. Thomas Aquinas family can enter and feel immediately welcomed, immediately cherished by the Jedi Master himself.
“Use compassion to listen,” he said. “What is the pebble that the person sitting next to you or your friend is dealing with today?”
“You only have to change your part of the world. And if enough people were to do just that... we’d be able to change the entire thing. It’s that simple.”
Thank you, Mr. Couture, for making our part of the world an unbelievably better place simply because of your existence in it.