Monday, October 20

Take a Hike

Ever wake up and know it's going to be the best day ever--and it really is? Such days are priceless. But what about when it's not the best day ever, even though you thought it was going to be?

My grandma, Esther, taught me a lot about attitude and about how our reactions are as important as our actions. About how to see the glass half-full, instead of half-empty.

The world is a place where half-empty is anticipated, even extolled. It's trendy to complain someone once told me. Maybe that's why, according to the CDC, antidepressants are now the most commonly prescribed drugs in the United States--more than drugs used to treat high blood pressure, high cholesterol, asthma, or headaches. The July 2007 article here gives food for thought.

As a kid, when I was bored, or otherwise disillusioned with life, Grandma had her own brand of medicine to administer: take a hike. She said it literally, but in the kindest way possible--my grandmother was a saint. A walk to the pond worked wonders for clearing out the senses. A hike up a nearby mountain, to a point she prescribed from the vantage of her back door, was a sure fire remedy for whining or complaining and really put things into perspective. How very good it felt to get back home and soak aching feet in a bucket of warm water!

Because of Grandma's teachings, I know I have a choice in how I react to trials and heartaches, and I know my reaction will have a direct bearing on how the day will ultimately turn out. A walk around the block or a hike up the mountainside still helps to clarify muddled thoughts, distill anguish, and put disappointment into proper perspective.

Each day has something to teach us and can be our best, if we so choose.

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