Two days ago as Mary and I sat on our porch soaking in the remnants of the day’s sun a woman walked by. She had seen me limping around the block and so asked how I was doing. (I had my knee was replaced 4 weeks ago). She then surprised us by asking if she could join us on our porch. I had only interacted with her during a sidewalk walk-by a few days before. We didn’t even know her name!
For the next 90 minutes, as the evening breezes turning to cool, we listened and she, with tears pouring, (lap dog licking them away,) related an immensely sad and desperate story… one of profound abandonment, failure, disappointment and conflict. Now, more than 60 years of age this frightened woman is alone; without anyone and with only the flickering hope for a better future.
Yesterday, through various media, including old fashioned postal mail, I have been affirmed and loved with many greetings for my 60th birthday. (Do I need to get a real job now?) I was reminded that the greatest of riches is to be found in the quality of our relationships. And I am a very wealthy man!
I am humbled by the contrast! How many others are like this woman?
In my little life I try to make the world a better place… more compassionate, more just, and more beautiful. I know I am hopelessly naive and idealistic, but I chose to believe this can happen if only more and more people care for another. So here is my birthday wish/request, here is what I would like for my birthday… if within the first 24 hours of reading would you attempt to make the world a little better for at least one other person? However you chose to do it; but make one other person’s life a little bit brighter… a gift of flowers, a kind and gentle word, an act of kindness. Perhaps it’s a significant act? Your call. I would be thrilled if you were then to take a moment and communicate the act or deed and what, if any results you experience. Yesterday I chose to rededicate my life to making this world a better place. I will believe that change is possible. I love being idealistic.