At 8:30 AM this morning, after my ritual watching of “CBS Sunday Morning,” I started out for my morning walk. It was cloudy and somewhat cooler than yesterday. Not too long into my walk I began to experience some tightness in my chest and the telltale sponginess in my arms. I began to think I should make an appointment with my doctor just to be sure all is well with my heart and circulatory system.
I crossed the street and as I continued my walk I noticed an elderly gentleman had also crossed the street and was walking toward me. As I got closer I saw him steadying himself by holding on to a signpost and his cane. I said to him as I approached, “We have to get out and do our walking, don’t we?” He responded and I stopped to briefly chat.
He mentioned that he was trying to build up to walking one mile. He said he wanted to be able to walk to church. Noting limited public transportation he said then he could walk to the grocery store a mile away. But how would get back home with a bag of groceries? I said I believed there was a community program that picks up folks with no transportation and encouraged him to look into it.
Then I asked, “How old are you?” “Ninety,” he responded. I said, “I am 80,” and shrugged my shoulders in disbelief. We chatted a bit longer about our longevity, I bid him a good day and parted. As I walked away I noticed all the tightness in my chest was gone, my arms felt fine as well. I said out loud as I walked, “This is a good day to be alive!” I knew I had to write something about how I felt about this experience and prayed out loud again that I could accurately record these feelings.
So often when I have a strong emotional response to some event or experience, a stream of consciousness seems to flow eloquently through my mind. Then, when I try to share it through writing I seldom seem to capture the intensity I first felt.
There is something remarkable about realizing “This is a good day to be alive!” So often we take for granted that just as the sun sets it will also rise. Another day will come and another set of events and experiences. Life is NOT something to take for granted. We all know the day will come that the sun will still rise, but we will have moved on in the life beyond life. For me, today means just a little more than it did before my walk. I cherish the event that brought a stranger to me so I could touch the depth of living again.
May you also cherish this day for Today Is A Good Day To Be Alive!