Thursday, December 10, 2009

What it Takes to Appreciate

Our weather in the Seattle area is very cold at present. I mean REALLY cold!

A couple weeks ago, I needed to drop my car off for service. It was a bright, sunny day, so I decided to walk about 2 miles to meet a friend for lunch. Although it was a gloriously beautiful day, it was cold and windy.

My walk proved to be rather uncomfortable, from a temperature related perspective! My ears and nose were extremely cold by the time I arrived at my destination.

I'll tell you what though - walking in to that warm restaurant felt wonderful! I go to that restaurant pretty frequently, but until that day, I never appreciated the warmth that greeted me when I walked through the door.

Nothing like being freezing cold to help you appreciate being in a warm place.

Sometimes I think that's why we have some of the extremes in life. We can't really appreciate being relaxed, unless we experience times of stress. We can't fully enjoy being loved if we haven't also spent some time feeling alone and lonely. The list could go on and on. For any pleasant experience in life, there is an equivalent negative. Without experiencing each side of the coin, we wouldn't know just how fortunate we are when the good experience appears.

I'm enjoying the cold weather, even though it's bringing me some strange problems, like a frozen water valve, delays in getting my gutters and windows cleaned, and the inevitably higher heating bills.

When I stand over my heat vent, or in front of my fireplace and bask in the warmth, I'm thankful that I have a warm place to be! Many don't have that privilege.

Next time you're experiencing an extreme... remember that nothing lasts forever. Everything is impermanent. Life is change. The heat wave of today will eventually yield to a cold spell. The snow storm of today will eventually yield to a mellow, spring day. It's all part of life.