Slow down and smile…

Posted by admin - 23/02/13 at 02:02 pm

Camille, Linus and I met baby Lindsey in the pool on a summer afternoon.
She frolicked and splashed about in her floating seahorse in the shallow end.

I could tell from the almond shape and slight redness around her eyes that Lindsey suffered from Down’s Syndrome, a difficult condition fraught with ongoing physical challenges.
Lindsey had already endured a number of heart and other surgeries, her first at barely three months of age.

Despite the obstacles, Lindsey’s bright smile and youthful zeal revealed a young girl enjoying the whims of toddler-hood.
Her mother shared with me that she and her husband consciously chose to bring Lindsey into the world, with full knowledge of her condition.  She lovingly expressed her surprise at the blessings Lindsey gave her family, the closeness that stemmed from the operations, the celebration of each small victory.
A first step, a first word, meant so much.

They would never worry if Lindsey didn’t make honor roll, or compete for student council or top-of-the-class.
To them, if she could learn enough words to speak her mind, that would be an extraordinary success.
Every milestone along the path, no matter how small, marked a huge triumph.
“She is our greatest treasure,” she said.

Talk about perspective.
Nowadays, we take too much for granted.
We neglect the tiny moments of beauty that surround us everywhere, too caught up in the crisis du jour to notice smells, sights and sounds—the magnificent daily unfoldings.

What have you overlooked today?
What did you miss?

Even when we see, we quickly disregard.
“Yeah, yeah, sure.  Nice garden.  Nice pots.”
On to the next thing, in a furious flurry.
Can’t dally.
Gotta’ rush.

Suppose you slowed down.
Suppose you brought yourself more into each moment, pulled focus from the problem at the office or the emergency that awaits you at home.

If you do, you will discover two enormous benefits.
First, your quality of life will improve immediately.
Second, the break that you give yourself from worry gives your brain time to rest and makes you more effective at solving the issues when you return to them.
Win-win.

Too often, we scurry like rats from dusk to dawn, home to work and back, nose to the ground, blinders blocking all vision.

Pick your head up.  Look around.
Find something to appreciate.
Drink it in.
Smile and spread your joy.

Hans Christian Anderson wrote:
“’Just living isn’t enough,’ said the butterfly.  ‘One must also have freedom, sunshine and a little flower.’”

I found a beautiful flower that special day.
Her name was Lindsey.

That’s A View From The Ridge…

One Response to “Slow down and smile…”

  1. Karen Frank says:
    February 28th, 2013 at 3:50 pm

    Thanks for sharing your story. Words of wisdom indeed, such a simple concept, yet seemingly difficult to execute. Thanks for the reminder to “drink it in” .

    Wishing you a weekend with freedom, sunshine, and a little flower.

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