Yesterday I wrote about a nearly thirty year old memory. I called the piece “The Blue Bike” and if you haven’t read it, you can scroll down past today’s entry. There it is…
Over the course of the day, I had feedback online and lots of remarks from people I ran into. I’m pleased so many took the time to write or call me with comments about the way Jorge and I reacted to the situation. But drawing attention to our actions was not my intent.
I told the story of “The Blue Bike” to illustrate the last line in the posting… the quote from Emily Dickinson,
“To live is so startling it leaves little time for anything else.”
I hoped readers would be impressed with the wonder of all life presents us with, and how opening up and contributing what we can, brings the most unexpected emotional rewards.
If we allow ourselves to go “out on a limb” and partake of the opportunities, we grow in understanding and contentment follows.
When we see animals suffering, we know that we’re not being conned. When people ask us for help, the heartstrings tug but we wonder if we’re being scammed. Doubt and the wariness often cause our mind’s reasoning to trump our heart’s emotions. We’re left confused… wondering what we should do.
When we see a need and want to help, another worry is, “Will I somehow offend the person and will I set myself up for embarrassment?” Years ago, I went walking through downtown with my mother-in-law. We passed a very poor family sitting on the curb. I felt upset but powerless. “Just a minute…” said Doña Bertha. She ducked into a bakery and bought some food, then walked back to the family and asked if they wanted it. Their reaction was immediate – they jumped on it! I asked her, “How did you know to do that?” “I didn’t,” she said, “I offered what I could. If they did not want or need it, I knew I’d soon find someone who did.”
I have followed her example since then. When moved to do so, I offer what I can and you know what? I’ve never once been turned down… not once.