It’s not the kind of thing you readily admit at parties. It’s not cool. But here goes: I enjoy watching TED talks on Netflix.
Inspired by Shawn Achor’s TED Talk, which is apparently one of the top twenty most-viewed, I’m going to try to shoot for a short recounting of one positive experience in my day, every day, and will post here from time to time.
Day #1 – I Found My Kids
This positive experience came on the heels of a frantic one. My younger kids were lost for about five minutes. After my shower I couldn’t find them. I panicked and ran out to the pond beyond our backyard. I looked in the front yard, to no avail. I fought back tears and bad images and I prayed hard and fast. Then I saw two blonde heads bobbing up and down in the distance. The kids had decided to explore a new part of the neighborhood. After chewing them out for not telling me first, I hugged them tightly and sat on a bench to watch them play in the driveway. I have my children. Other arms are empty today. If this is not a blessing in my life, I don’t know what is.
Day #2 – Leaf-Crunching on the Trail
Forcing myself out of bed, especially after sleep interrupted by kids, is painful. But I have never regretted getting up early. Today I read a scripture meditation and then quietly slipped out of the house to walk for a mile on the nature trail behind our backyard, to contemplate and to pray. I am so lucky to have this trail where I can be surrounded by foliage and forget that I am actually in the middle of Midwestern suburbia. The crunching of fall leaves interrupted my thoughts. A delightful interruption. A rabbit skipped ahead of me for a minute and then darted into the brush. I breathed the crisp and still air. I am blessed. So blessed.
I’m not sure I have ever met an angel here on earth but if I have it was today. He came in the form of a wiry, wrinkled man with snowy white hair. A volunteer for Habitat for Humanity furniture pick-up. I made small talk and noticed his eyes were very soulful and kind. He struggled to help the other volunteer lift our old couch. I wanted to help him but refrained for fear of embarrassing him. He lifted his end of the couch at last and I breathed in relief. Is donating this couch enough? Is it a cast off? Yes. Could I give more? I felt like donating the couch was not enough. I need to do more and give more. I felt very rich at that moment but like I am not doing enough, caught up in my own comfortable world so often. We give but is it enough? Rich is relative. I don’t feel rich on a daily basis. But I know we are compared to so many. We have much to give. Am I giving enough? Thank you, would-be-angel, for reminding me to give sacrificially and not just out of my excess. This is a positive moment, to me, because it’s one that has opened my eyes, and my heart, a little wider.