OF WISDOM - One Day at a Time
There are two days in every week in which we do not have to worry, two
days, which should be kept free from fear and apprehension.
One of these days is Yesterday with all its mistakes and cares, its faults
and blunders, its aches and pains. Yesterday has passed forever beyond our
control. All the money in the world cannot bring back yesterday. We cannot
undo a single act we performed; we cannot erase a single word said.
Yesterday is gone forever.
The other day we should not worry about is Tomorrow with its adversities,
its burdens, its large promise and its poor performance. Tomorrow is also
beyond our immediate control. Tomorrow's sun will rise, either in splendor
or behind a mask of clouds, but it will rise. Until it does we have no
stake in Tomorrow, for it is yet to be born.
This leaves only one day, Today. Any person can fight the battle for just
one day. It is when you add the burdens of those two awful eternities,
Yesterday and Tomorrow, that we break down. It is not the experience of
Today that drives a person mad. It is the remorse and bitterness of
something, which happened yesterday and the dread Tomorrow may bring.
Let us, therefore, live one day at a time.
Helping Others Win
A few years ago, at the Seattle Special Olympics, nine contestants, all
physically or mentally disabled, assembled at the starting line for the
100 yard dash. At the gun, they all started out, not exactly in a dash,
but with a relish to run the race to the finish and win. All, that is,
except one little boy who stumbled on the asphalt, tumbled over a couple
of times, and began to cry. The other eight heard the boy cry. They slowed
down and looked back. Then they all turned around and went back. Every one
of them! One girl with Down's Syndrome bent down and kissed him and said:
"This will make it better." Then all nine linked arms and walked
together to the finish line. Everyone in the stadium stood, and the
cheering went on for several minutes.
People who were there are still telling the story. Why? Because deep
down we know this one thing: What matters in this life is more than
winning for ourselves. What matters in this life is helping others win,
even if it means slowing down and changing our course.
The Day I Finally Cried
I didn't cry when I learned that I was the parent of a mentally
handicapped child. I just sat still and didn't say anything while my
husband and I were informed that two-year-old Kristi was - as we suspected
"Go ahead and cry," the doctor advised kindly. "Helps
prevent serious emotional difficulties."
Serious difficulties not withstanding, I couldn't cry then nor during the
months that followed. When Kristi was old enough to attend school, we
enrolled her in our neighborhood kindergarten at age seven.
It would have been comforting to cry that day I left her in that room full
of self-assured, eager, alert five-year-olds. Kristi had spent hours upon
hours playing by herself, but this moment, when she was the different
child among twenty, was probably the loneliest she had ever known.
However, positive things began to happen to Kristi in her school and to
schoolmates too. When boasting of their own accomplishments, Kristi's
classmates always took pains to praise her as well: "Kristi got all
her spelling words right today." No one bothered to add that her
spelling list was easier then anyone else's.
During Kristi's second year in school, she faced a very traumatic
experience. The big public event of the term was a competition based on a
culmination of the year's music and physical education activities. Kristi
was way behind in both music and motor coordination. My husband and I
dreaded the day as well.
On the day of the program, Kristi pretended to be sick. Desperately I
to keep her home. Why let Kristi fail in a gymnasium filled with parents,
students and teachers? What a simple solution it would be just to let my
child stay home. Surely missing one program couldn't matter. But my
conscience wouldn't let me off that easily. So I practically shoved a
pale, reluctant Kristi onto the school bus and proceeded to be sick
Just as I had forced my daughter to go to school, now I forced myself to
go to the program. It seemed that it would never be time for Kristi's
group to perform. When at last they did, I knew why Kristi had been
worried. Her class was divided into relay teams. With her limp and slow,
clumsy reactions, she would surely hold up her team.
The performance went surprising well, though, until it was time for the
gunnysack race. Now each child had to climb into the sack from a standing
position, hop to a goal line, return and climb out of the sack.
I watched Kristi standing near the end of her line of players, looking
But as Kristi's turn to practice neared, a change took place in her team.
The tallest boy in the line stepped behind Kristi and placed his hands on
her waist. Two other boys stood a little ahead of her. The moment the
player in front of Kristi stepped for the sack, those two boys grabbed the
sack and held it open while the tall boy lifted Kristi and dropped her
neatly into it. A girl in front of Kristi took her hand and supported her
briefly until Kristi gained her balance. Then off she hopped, smiling and
Amid the cheers of teachers, schoolmates and parents, I crept off by
to thank God for the warm, understanding people in life who make it
for my disabled daughter to be like her fellow human beings.
Then I finally cried.
IF I HAD MY LIFE TO LIVE OVER
(by Erma Bombeck)
· I would have talked less and listened more.
· I would have invited friends over to dinner even if
the carpet was stained
and the sofa faded.
· I would have eaten the popcorn in the
"GOOD" living room and worried much
less about the dirt when someone wanted to light a fire in the fireplace.
· I would have taken the time to listen to my
grandfather ramble about his
· I would never have insisted the car windows be rolled
up on a summer day
because my hair had just been teased and sprayed.
· I would have burned the pink candle sculpted like a
rose before it melted
· I would have sat on the lawn with my children and not
worried about grass
· I would have cried and laughed less while watching
television and more
while watching life.
· I would have gone to bed when I was sick instead of
pretending the earth
would go into a holding pattern if I weren't there for the day.
· I would never have bought anything just because it
was practical, wouldn't
show soil or was guaranteed to last a lifetime.
· Instead of wishing away nine months of pregnancy, I'd
have cherished every
moment realizing that the wonderment growing inside me was the only chance
life to assist God in a miracle.
· When my kids kissed me impetuously, I would never
have said, "Later. Now go
get washed up for dinner."
· There would have been more "I love yous"...
more "I'm sorrys"...but mostly,
given another shot at life, I would seize every minute...look at it and
see it...live it...and never give it back.
In honor of women's history month and in memory of Erma
Bombeck who lost her
fight with cancer. Here is an angel sent to watch over you
No One is Watching
We convince ourselves that life will be better after we get married, have a baby, then
another. Then we are frustrated that the kids aren't old enough and we'll be more
content when they are. After that we're frustrated that we have teenagers to deal
with. We will certainly be happy when they are out of that stage. We tell ourselves
that our life will be complete when our spouse gets his or her act together, when
we get a nicer car, are able to go on a nice vacation, when we retire. The truth
is, there's no better time to be happy than right now. If not now, when?
Your life will always be filled with challenges. It's best to admit this to
yourself and decide to be happy anyway. One of my favorite quotes comes from Alfred D
Souza. He said, "For a long time it had seemed to me that life was about to
begin - real life. But there was always some obstacle in the way, something to
be gotten through first, some unfinished business, time still to be served, a debt to
be paid. Then life would begin. At last it dawned on me that these obstacles were my
This perspective has helped me to see that there is no way to happiness. Happiness
is the way. So, treasure every moment that you have. And treasure it more because you
shared it with someone special, special enough to spend your time...and remember
that time waits for no one... So stop waiting until you finish school, until you go
back to school, until you lose ten pounds, until you gain ten pounds, until you have
kids, until your kids leave the house, until you start work, until you
retire, until you get married, until you get divorced, until Friday night,
until Sunday morning, until you get a new car or home, until your car or home is
paid off, until spring, until summer, until fall, until winter, until you are
off welfare, until the first or fifteenth, until your song comes on, until you've had
a drink, until you've sobered up, until you die, until you are born again to decide
that there is no better time than right now to be happy...
Happiness is a journey, not a destination.
Thought for the day:
Work like you don't need money,
Love like you've never been hurt,
And dance like no one is watching.