By Michael J. Moore, Doctor of Chiropractic
A recent experience that I had while Donna and I were on a trip to Palmer College in Iowa is worth repeating for the life lesson that it brought to me. On our way through the San Francisco Airport, I noticed a woman being escorted by an airline attendant. As we walked to her side, I noticed how the sun glasses she was wearing seemed out of place on this gray, overcast day. Then I saw her white cane sticking out of her carry-on bag. She talked with the attendant as she took her seat in the front of the bus which transports passengers between terminals. Donna and I followed with the other passengers. Every seat in the bus was full and most sat expressionless, exercising that typical blank stare of flight-weary travelers, attempting not to make eye contact.
When we arrived at the main terminal, I expected everyone aboard the shuttle bus to jump up as they typically do and push ahead to the door before the bus came to a complete stop. To our amazement, not a person moved or said a word when the bus came to a stop. All eyes were fixed on the blind woman and her attendant as they stood up, gathered her belongings, and navigated the steps off the bus. It was not until they had cleared the bottom step that anyone else stood to begin gathering their belongings. Donna and I sat there for a moment and glanced at each other. “Did you see what just happened?” Now that was a moment of respect in a busy international airport!
What if that moment of concern, patience, and extraordinary respect was given to each one on that bus, the airline attendant at the counter, the flight attendants, and the strangers you pass on the moving walkways? I wondered how that would change our experience of this trip and those we came in contact with that day.
Somehow it seems easier to acknowledge those in greatest need by pausing for a moment during our hectic lives. But what about those closest to us–our spouse, our kids, our co-workers, our classmates? Maybe simple little experiences like this time on the bus can remind us all that the important things are the simple things, and probably not “things” at all.
How about our attention, our moment’s concern for the well-being of a fellow man, or just being there to listen when your friend or child comes to us with a story or question? This is part of the giving back that can make all the difference in the quality of life for another and ourselves in turn.
On Valentine’s Day we gave out candles at our office with a card attached reading “May this candle and its flame represent your friendship and love for someone you care for. Light it, share it, and take a little time to be with and do something special for someone you love.” In my experience, cards and flowers are wonderful, but it is the spark of life, of love, of passion that we share that says more than words on a card could ever capture. Maybe the magic is not in the material gifts, the candy or flowers. The magic of the heart we seek just may be within us and is experienced when we share it with another.
The candle flame represents that spark, the reminder each time we see it that we do make a difference in the lives of others, and because of our choices in our living, we create the experience we call our lives. Let it not be just a little spark but a bon fire that lights the countryside by our presence!
B. J. Palmer, D.C., was quoted as saying, “It is better to light one candle than to curse the darkness.” This certainly has proven true in my life. What about yours?
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Dr. Michael Moore is a graduate of Palmer Chiropractic College in Davenport, Iowa. He is a third-generation Redding Chiropractor. His office is located at 1484 Hartnell Avenue in Redding, California.
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