Good morning! A recounting of yesterday’s experience at the VA…unedited…

Good morning from North Mississippi. The air is nice and brisk this morning, as I sip my first cup of coffee. Yesterday, I had an appointment at the VA. 

As I sat chatting with a couple of veterans, I noticed an old man in a wheelchair come in. His wife walked behind him and helped him. He sat quietly as his wife tried to explain why they were late to the receptionist. 

“I called and said the VA double-booked us on appointments,” The lady said, as frustration crept into her voice. “We came straight here, and now you’re telling me we have to wait?”

The man began to grunt, and his wife turned to him. I watched as she listened to him attentively, and she interpreted what the man said for the receptionist. They came and sat next to me. 

Not once did this wife ignore her husband, but she held his hands until he calmed down. “It’s going to work out,” she said to him. “We just have to wait.” They talked quietly, and I tried not to stare overmuch, but the tenderness she had for her husband hit me right in the heart. 

The man calmed down, and I looked at the floor. I became introspective in the lobby of the clinic. “How often do I react poorly to a situation because I’m overcome by the emotions surrounding it?”

My name was called, and I went back to my appointment. Given what I just witnessed in the lobby, I tried to curb my gripes. Because there’s always someone worse off than me. Yet, in this case they’re better off than me, because of the love they share with each other, and the tenderness and affection they have for each other will keep them through any storm. 

Today’s a new day. It’s provided each of us with a new start, a fresh beginning, and the opportunity to make the most of it, if we have the courage to take a risk and reach for new experiences. 

So, may you boldly go where you’ve never gone before, and once you’re there, may you have the courage to take the road less traveled.

Because that’s the road that makes all the difference. 

Freeman

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