When we are younger it's all about "achieving "
We measure how well we are doing by what we have.
But as you get a little older - you do in fact get a little wiser and you learn a thing or two on this journey.
First of all you learn how privileged and blessed you are to be a part of this planet for however long you've been granted.
Secondly you learn that lists are indeed very wise things to have and thirdly you learn that the items on your list should not be " things " you've acquired but things you've " done "
We are not the houses we live in.
They are merely structures to keep us safe from the outside.
Some of us may have grand homes - some of us may live in humble abodes and still others live in cars or cardboard boxes by the subway - but we are all people living inside of them - the size of the house does not
reflect the size of one's character.
We are not the clothes we wear.
They are merely pieces of cloth designed to hide our nakedness - and to protect us from the elements.
Some of us may wear designer clothes - some of us may wear only good will finds - still others dress in rags but we are all people beneath the fabric - the cost of the cloth does not reflect the worth of one's life.
That is simply a payback for what society deems important. A star earns an excessive one - but is no better than a lawyer who is no better than a doctor who is no better than a teacher who is no better than a social worker who is no better than someone who makes minimum wage. A garbage man's job was created so that unnecessary diseases be eliminated and may probably be the most important one of all for that very reason. Some are smarter - some are more artistically inclined - but we are all people depositing that weekly - biweekly - monthly sum - we are more than what we earn and what we " make " does not reflect the value of a life well served.
That is only a means of getting from here to there.
Some of us may drive fancy ones - some of us may drive economical ones - and some of us may drive rust heaps - but we are all people sitting behind the wheel - trying to get from here to there. What we drive is not as important as what drives us.
We are not the toys we seek to own. We are not the latest machine we need to have.
We are not diamonds or rubies or any other precious stone.
We are not tax returns -
And most importantly - we are NOT - not one of us - better than anyone else.
We are all just people and what defines us is how we live our lives -
We are not what we can accomplish in a day - but what we've accomplished during our time on Earth.
We are acts of kindness -
We are smiles -
We are words of encouragement -
We are helping hands -
We are hugs
We are welcoming
We are supportive
We are sympathetic and empathetic
We are part of a global family and as a family we should and must keep an eye out for each other.
Life shouldn't be a competition of what we have - but rather a competition of what we can do to help ease the suffering of others.
We were meant to shine from the inside - not the outside.
The people that glow are the ones that live their lives with kindness as their guide and the ones that deserve our respect and admiration the most.
And though diamonds were once a " must have " in my world I've long since given them
to my daughters - they mean very little to me now ( other then the joy they brought to them when
I placed them in their hands )
A couple of weeks ago I walked for the Relay For Life here in Montreal - and met the most charming elderly woman.
After telling me about her teenage years ( I helped her walk around the track ) she touched my hand and asked if I was a volunteer -
"Oh I'd just love to have you visit me - you're such a sweetheart and you made me laugh " she said with a smile.
And because of those few words I'm looking into doing some volunteer work in the fall with the elderly.
The house renovations can be put on hold one day a week.
Maybe my gift is simply the gift of laughter but don't I owe it to share it freely with others? Especially those that may not have a reason to do so very often?
It may not be much - in fact I know it isn't much - but it's something - and it's a start to living a life of kindness.
We are, after all, not the houses we live in.
They are merely structures to keep us safe from the outside and I've learned a thing or two on this journey.....................
See you in September Hazel...............you are amazing.
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