Jan 14, 2014

20 Up & Down In A Breath–He Just Fell

This morning as I made my way around to the bus stop, going well off my route in order to avoid slick icy patches, I experienced a shift so quick it surprised me.  I was standing on the opposite side of the street waiting for the traffic light to change when I spotted the school crossing guard. He is a very very old man. I see him often and we exchange morning pleasantries and wish each other a good day. As the light change and he made his way to the middle of the street holding up his red and white STOP sign. I noticed his hands were shaking. The tremors were so visible that the sign was moving quickly from side to side.  We greeted each other and exchanging pleasantries. I was a couple of steps ahead when I heard a loud bam. I turned in the direction of the sound only to see the poor man lying in the street on his back like a turtle trying his level best to get up. I was so shocked to see him on the ground. I quickly turned around and extended my right hand and pulled him to his feet. I asked if he was ok, he answered softly yes and nodded. I think he was as shocked as I was to be on the ground and a bit embarrassed.

I walked away thinking, ‘thank God he is ok and how the experience in that one moment is such a metaphor for life. Things can change as quick as a breath, one moment you are up and walking briskly the next you are flat on your back and barely able to get up.’ The moment certainly reinforces my philosophy of never taking anything (ability/mobility) or anyone for granted and remaining humble and grateful.

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