This is a see-saw life, not a balancing act. You can push off with the best of intentions and still land on your behind with some other happy camper up in the air, legs dangling, laughing with glee and triumph. Each day is a new attempt to rise up to the challenges of daily living.
When sadness threatens to overwhelm me, it is the conscious decision to commit an act of kindness that brings me back up again. Even in the simplicity of speaking to another, I am deciding to reveal myself. If he finds comfort in the telling of my own struggles, then it is a conscious listening and sharing on both of our parts. We welcome and make room for our stories with respect. When that person is your child, the joy is deep and life affirming.
My son gives money to the homeless because it is good to do good, to bring blessings to bear and share in a world that is not always fair. But a simple smile, or a cup of coffee, is so meaningful that we can hear the laughter lighten within ourselves — and we, and the recipient, are freed for a moment from doubt and anxiety. Rather than withhold in the need for acquisition, he says instead, “I don’t really need that much to live on.” He gives with an open hand and an open heart. Yes, I am proud of him.
I have such a limited time to make an impact on my family and in this world. Trying to instill charitable values, and the awareness that we can alter another’s personal world, and the universe at large, is hoping that the germ of generosity and openness takes root in those whose lives we touch. Fear and mistrust is an unlearning of those ideals to which we hold dear. All it takes is one playground bully to push us to the ground and we reassess the basic lessons we were taught as children.
There is nothing random about an act of kindness. Empathy, and the desire to create a cycle of good and trust where hearts and minds have been broken, leaves the world a better place. Whether you choose to meet that person face to face, or merely imagine the surprise and wonder of the recipient, you are acting with intention. It is that intention that gives me hope through the highs and lows of the see-saw life.
Thank you for stopping by! I appreciate it more than you know.