So the story goes, as does the rest of my life -- an unexpected spinning until collapsing on the floor....seemingly valueless as it is just a penny and disregarded by most.
And then this morning I saw a pile of pennies on the street as I walked to the bus to get the train to go to work. Quietly, I took a few and left most for another who was possible in as much of a little fortune as I. Before stuffing them into my pocket, I counted seven. My fingers plucked up seven of the little copper reminders -- even the smallest of things have value.
I heard a motivational speaker quite a few years back talk about a friend needing to win the lottery and finding a dime on the street. His friend didn't pick up the dime because it was only a dime and he needed more. The speaker explained it was a reminder of the fortunes one is given that are often overlooked.
Now just before I heard this cat share this wisdom, I had a rough patch of time where money was scarce... In fact it was absent most days. I probably struggled no more than any other with finances, but with my brain, it was crippling emotionally to go through this neediness. At the time I worked in a suburb that I had to transfer two buses and a train for the commute. It was a long ride and there were days I was counting nickels for the fare. I had arrived at work one day and felt grateful that I got in. The commute was no different than any other day, but it was pouring rain and possibly the day I received my paycheck. Definitely a day I took a coffee from the break room. And I remember, still today, bring grateful for finding the coins in all the corners and jars and change purses to make the fare one more day.
I decided to take a moment and instead of making the to-do list, showing me at the end of the day all that I had not achieved; I decided to write all the things for which I was grateful that day. And I hear myself as I recommend this exercise -- there is the very trite, my friends and family, my kids and dog.... But that's not what I mean. Daily gratitude is the little picture. Its the pennies adding up to a bus ride and a free cup of coffee.
At the end of a week, I looked back at my little notebook. I had things about my kids in there, but i also had things like, uninterrupted bath and hot water. I had things like milk in my coffee and unexpected dinner invitation from my sister with a nice bit of fancy cheese.
I don't want to list the things for which I felt gratitude yesterday. I am focusing on today and those seven little things that should not be disregarded, but piled up into a mound of valued moments.