When I turned 30 I went through a mini mid-life crisis. I heard about a man that had attached helium balloons to a lawn chair and had floated up into the sky. When asked why he had done such a crazy stunt, he replied, "You can't just sit there." That got me thinking, What had I accomplished? Really accomplished in my life? Had I just been "sitting there"?
I told my then husband about the story and my dilemma. He didn't really understand what my concern was. Finally he asked, "What do you want to do? Change the world?" My reply with resignation that I would not be understood yet again was, "No, I will never do anything as great as that." Then much to my surprise he said, "Look at that horse out there. Don't you think you changed his world?"
The horse he alluded to was a rescue I had taken in 2 years prior. Neglected, crippled, fearful of people he had been a mess. I had rescued him, treated him, gained his trust. Now 500lbs later he grazed in my pasture a picture of health and beauty, his past forgotten.
I HAD changed the world, at least for him. As I thought about that I realized that I had changed the world for lots of 4 legged and maybe some 2 legged creatures too. I have rescued countless animals removing them from a "world" of neglect, pain and hunger and showed them a new reality. People too, I would like to think I have made their "world" a little better by passing through.
So for the last 7 years I have tried to be more aware of my affect on this world in which we are a part. The farm and marriage is since gone. That "world" I once knew is past and that's more than OK. The Horse and the Lesson still remain:
We each can make a difference. A kind word, a smile, a donation of a few dollars can make a huge difference. In my role as a Human Resource Director I see many different "worlds" than my own. I see how a helping hand can make a difference, how a job can help someone get to that next level, changing the reality they once knew. When you smile at someone or share a pleasantry, you could change someone's day, change their "world" even if it is just for 1 day. So I challenge you, Have you changed the world today?
Shannon L. Hull Darby