Did I Lose Something?

Oh yes, my mind.

Drive-thru banking offers the convenience of not having to exit the car especially in the heat of the mid day sun.   On this particular day, I rolled down the window retrieved the hollow tube and inserted my check as well as my driver’s license in the rather mundane way I have done a hundred some times before.   With fingers fumbling the driver’s license though, it fell to the ground below.

Having to open the door to locate the driver’s license, I instead discovered a diamond bracelet lying on the ground next to it.  Without thinking, I picked it off the ground and held it up to the teller and hit the button to communicate with her.

“I found this bracelet. I don’t know how you can get it back to the rightful owner, but I will send it with my other stuff, ok.”   I told her.

She responded back, “We have a lost and found.  I will put it there.”

I do not even remember actually looking at the bracelet. I simply slid it into the canister with my check and driver’s license and sent it on its way.  I did though wonder its sentimental value and if anyone would think to go back to the bank in search of their lost item.  Hopefully so.

There is such an unsettling feeling to lose something.  Or for that matter, to have something stolen.  I know some people never really get over losing a particular item and most often it is not the material value but rather what it represents.

Do you know how children sometimes carry around a security blanket?   Sometimes even as adults we do the same.   Whether it be a trinket or a valuable piece of jewelry handed down from generation to generation, there can be a special bond associated that when lost can be devastating.

Likewise, there is such exhilaration in finding something we thought was lost. It can be the simplest of things, but to find can be like opening a present from under the tree on Christmas morning.  There is that magical feeling of reclaiming something that we concluded was gone forever.

For whatever reason, I seem to gravitate to finding lost items.  Several years back it seemed to happen quite often that I would find a credit card sticking out of an ATM as I drove up to the bank.   Each time, I would take it inside and give it to the manager explaining someone had left it in the machine.

When I was much younger there was a woman who was getting gas and not realizing that she had put her purse on top of the car.  When finished, she drove away – with the purse still sitting on top of the car.  My friend and I watched as the purse almost in slow motion rolled off and on to the ground behind her.

I was driving and went over to where the purse fell.   Positioning the car on my friend’s side, I told him to pick it up and then to hold on.   We lived in a rather desolate area with very little traffic but knew that she would be down the road a ways already.

Without thinking, I raced after her.  We caught up to her got up beside her and had my friend hold up the purse to his window as I honked the horn.   She looked over but at first did not realize what we were doing.   We were just a couple of punk kids, so I can only imagine her thought process.

At the time I had long hair that was about half way down my back so was used to negative stigmas from people.   But, I am sure when she saw us she did more than a quick  double take.   We were though able to get her to stop on the side of the road. When she did I got out, went over to her car and handed her the purse and walked away.

Several times when I have shared this story someone has asked if the woman said “thank you”, and my response has always been the same.  Does it matter?

In this case, she did not but I take it not as a lack of appreciation but rather as someone who was in shock and did not realize until later that she had forgotten to say “thank you.”  Furthermore, for me, life is rather simple.   It is not about her.

What she says or does not say is not a reflection of me.  I always feel that someone else is grateful, whether they are or not, because that is how I operate myself.  I am very appreciative of all that life has given to me and am quite humble to the fact that so many have far less than I do.

My philosophy is that everyone is doing the best they can, not in terms of pure potentiality but rather the best they can with the resources they feel they have available to themselves at that particular point in their life.  It is not for me to judge what they have going on in their head.   They may be fighting a fight that I could not possibly be able to endure, and they could be doing so on a daily basis.

There are individuals who have endured the most horrific of experiences and yet have prevailed.  There are others who have also experienced something just as tragic and are teetering on the edge.  It only takes one little incident to send them over the edge, and losing something could do just that.

Likewise, by giving something back to someone may be what brings them that slight glimmer of hope that gets them through the day. It may even be enough to turn their entire life around.   It only takes a spark to light a fire.  We never know when someone is in dire need of just a little spark to awaken the flame inside.

And while I do not believe that karma is as simplistic as simply doing something good for others and in return something good will happen to you.  Instead, what works for me is understanding what I like and what I don’t like.  I like it when someone does something nice for me, so why would I not do the same for others?

I’ve often been asked for as long as I can remember, “Why are you so happy all the time?”

What is happiness?  I find it within myself.  I enjoy the nuances that life has to offer, and the experiences that are afforded me.   Happiness to me is living.  Or rather living my life.     The more I concentrate on doing the best I can for myself all of those peripherals become less and less significant.

Moreover, we all experience both loss and gain.  How we respond is how we define ourselves.  There are opportunities for growth with both.

I may be losing my mind, forgetful as I may be, but I have made up my mind to continue to believe that no matter how absent minded I become I will more often than not find what I am looking for both literally and figuratively.

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