Getting a haircut at the Schuyler Barber Shop. Mia has been here the last couple of years, and we have that familiarity one develops with their barber.
“So, any New Year’s resolutions?” Mia asked. “Mine is losing weight. I packed on a few pounds this year.”
“Not really any New Year’s resolutions.” I replied. “I started a long time ago to just add one thing each year. Practice it and keep it. Things like shaking hands. Reaching out and shaking hands “hello”, “goodbye” or “thank you”. Like looking folks in the eye when we’re conversing. Deciding to be the person that always lets the other go ahead, in traffic, in the checkout line, at entrances and exits.”
“That’s a cool idea.” Mia commented. Then I stopped talking to listen to her. Another “resolution” of years past. She talked of her engagement, of her daughter’s absentee father, whatever else was current and interesting.
“You know how everyone says “Why can’t every day be like Christmas?”, and “Why can’t we be as thankful as we are on Thanksgiving, throughout the year?”, I asked, rhetorically.
“That’s me.” I stated. “I try to live every day like Thanksgiving and Christmas in one. To see beauty in the everyday world around us. To remember the only really important things in this life are the people we cherish. To give whenever possible and take as little as needed. To remember that each day is a gift with something wonderful in it, if you’ll just open your eyes to truly see.”
As it turns out, every day can be like Christmas, and for me it is.
I realized only recently that I have achieved a certain plateau. Perhaps I climbed right past the summit? (an old MST3K joke)
I found myself driving home in congested traffic after a long day at work, smiling like the proverbial village idiot, for no reason other than being happy to be here.
In each exchange of every day, I found my “me2” subconscious coaching me. What’s the best outcome for all parties? What is the honorable, noble, kind-hearted way to approach the situation? What’s the most caring toward the people involved? What would Buddha do? How would Jesus handle this? What would a cowboy do?
I am following all the “cowboy rules”: Cowboys don’t drink, smoke or swear (still need to be vigilant on the last one!).
Cowboys are kind to children, the aged, and animals.
Cowboys don’t shirk the hard stuff. “If you don’t stand for something, you’ll fall for anything.” When you stand up, to speak for those that can’t speak for themselves, when you stand your ground on ethics, morals, forgiveness and loving-kindness, when you stand beside those who have fallen, you may find you stand alone.
With right mind, an inner peace, a sense of belonging in the cosmos, speaking truth, I will stand my watch until the time comes for me to return to the earth from which I was made.
In the meantime, it’s a beautiful ride through a wondrous world, and I am drinking in every moment.
May peace and good fortune follow you each day through this New Year, and each new year after.
An old Irish saying: May you live as long as you want, and never want as long as you live.