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Seeing What’s in Front of You

Today I was finally able to find the time to take my car into the dealership because it has been blowing hot air.  As expected, the wait time was a little annoying but today, instead of fighting it, I embraced it.  With Monkey my dog in tow, I decided to walk the streets of LA to see what I could find.  I ended up at not such a unique place, Coffee Bean, and decided to sit outside and enjoying the mid-morning air.  I could have turned to the phone.  I could have turned to re-writing my to-do list.  I could have done a lot of the things we often do to avoid seeing what’s in front of us.

As I was getting settled, three young guys who I had seen and acknowledged inside the coffee shop, came outside near me.  One approached indirectly to say hi or maybe just to pet Monkey.  We began a simple conversation, and in less than 15 minutes, we had discussed the conflict between Israel and Palestine.  (He’s Jewish by the way)  We talked about his struggles of finding a job.  (He’s all of 20 years old)

We also talked sobriety and heroin addiction.  This young man was in Los Angeles from New York to complete rehab at a treatment center down the street.  He will have been sober for a year in less than a week.

At this point, I saw what was in front of me- a young capable man who just needed to talk.  He wanted to say hi, but hi turned to a chance for him to share his story and his excitement to move forward in life.  His Hi was a chance for me to realize once again, we all have a story.  We all have struggles.  We all have questions.  I loved sharing for just a moment and being able to say to him, “Find what you are passionate about. Write it down.  Get focused.  You have your entire life ahead of you.”  While he sweetly pet Monkey’s head like a little 12 year old boy, I saw him shift.  I watched him realize what I did at that moment too, that for a brief second today, we both saw what was in front of us and we listened.  My day was made just a bit better because of it.

What’s in front of you?  Are you listening?

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