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Car Wash

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Empowerment
Car Wash

We have two car washes in our little town. One has a couple of wash-it-yourself bays as well as a side where you stay in your car as it is processed through the suds and foam. The other is a full service operation where you step out of the vehicle and employees vacuum the interior before it is pulled along the automated wash and then a whole other crew cleans the windows and buffs and dries it on the other end.

Not too long ago, I realized that our car was due for the more extensive service. There was the grime from rainy streets, of course, but also my wife Ariel and I had partaken of late night snacks of sunflower and pumpkin seeds on the way home from some of our Monday Night seminars and the floor mats looked as if we had been invaded by a pack of messy squirrels. So one bright, sunny morning, while running errands, I stopped to get it cleaned.

As I pulled around the building to order from the service menu, I was surprised to see that I had pulled up behind a State Trooper, his distinctive cruiser festooned with a red and blue light bar. My pale green Prius appeared to be a lightweight distant cousin as it stood behind it. After I placed my order, I received a receipt, which I took into the building to the cashier for payment. Since it was a beautiful day, I then stepped outside to wait. The trooper was there, too, talking on his cellphone.

I had plenty of time to observe him without his noticing. He was about my height, 5’8 with short-cropped dark brown hair. He looked to be in his mid-30s and although we were approximately the same build, he was clearly weighted down. Bulletproof vest, belt with handcuffs, pepper spray and gun, sturdy boots – the extra load must have been at least 20 pounds, a lot of extra weight to be carrying through life each day.

“OK Hon, love you,” he said, as he concluded his call. Slipping his phone in his pocket he turned and I caught sight of a surprising weariness on his face. I realized that the equipment was not the only heavy load that he was carrying. Perhaps it was something happening at home. Perhaps it was the vestiges of dealing with his day-to-day duties: break-ins, accidents, traffic stops, domestic violence, crime in all its forms. Perhaps it was the fact that in general many people are unhappy to see him as he stops them on the road, lights flashing. In that moment I recognized that his must be oft times a thankless job.

Stepping up next to him as we watched the men with towels deftly buff our cars I said, “Officer, thank you for all you do to keep us and our communities safe. Thank you for your service.” I had a fleeting thought to tell him to be safe, but I simply concluded with, “Hope you have a nice day.”

“You’re welcome. Have a nice day, too,” he replied as he donned his hat and stepped forward to his shiny car.

As he climbed into his driver’s seat and went about his day, it seemed to me that perhaps his load was a bit lighter and that his car was not the only thing to have been shined and cleaned. And as I stepped into my Prius, I also was feeling lighter for having recognized another human being who works on my behalf, even though we had never been formally introduced and with any luck, we would not have any need for personal interactions in the future.

Since 1987, internationally acclaimed authors, seminar leaders, radio show hosts and business consultants Ariel and Shya Kane have acted as guides, leading people through the swamp of the mind into the clarity and brilliance of the moment. Find out more about the Kanes, their seminars in NYC, in the UKGermany and Costa Rica, the Say YES to Your Life! Meetups their work has inspired, their Being Here radio show or join their email newsletter. Also get information about their award-winning books.  Their newest book, Practical Enlightenment, is now available on Amazon.com.

Walk a Mile…or Two or Ten…in Their Shoes By Ariel & Shya Kane

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Walk a Mile…or Two or Ten…in Their Shoes By Ariel & Shya Kane

May 3: Walk a Mile… or Two or Ten… in Their Shoes

It’s so easy to judge how your parents raised you and how they live their lives, but only if you lack compassion for all that it means to be human. Take a chance. Set down your story and your need to be right and walk a mile… or two or ten… in their shoes. You just might end up being grateful instead. Callers welcome at Tel# 1-888-346-9141!

Listen Live this Wednesday, May 3rd at 9am PST / 12pm EST on the VoiceAmerica Empowerment Channel 

After this Wednesday, you can stream or download this episode and over 500 episodes on a wide variety of topics from our archives here.

You can also listen to Being Here on the go! Stream or download new and archived episodes to your smart phone or mobile device with these applications:
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Dinner with a Stranger By Ariel & Shya Kane

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7th Wave
Dinner with a Stranger By Ariel & Shya Kane

Dinner with a Stranger
by Ariel Kane

It had been years since Shya and I had eaten at an Ollie’s Noodle House. In the 80s and 90s we used to go to Manhattan’s Upper West Side to eat there. In those days we would make a special trip to have General Tso’s chicken or jumbo shrimp, a crunchy fried delight with a semi–sweet hot sauce, on a bed of bright green broccoli. Sometimes we would even bring Shya’s parents there, when they were still alive, to celebrate special occasions. Eventually that restaurant closed its doors and our lives moved on.

At the beginning of 2014, as if coming full circle, we found a new venue to hold our Manhattan seminars that was back in the neighborhood where I lived when Shya and I began seeing each other. In fact, from our course room in the Skyline Hotel, which is on 49th Street and 10th Avenue, we can actually see the building where we had our first date and eventually lived together. As Shya and I began to reacquaint ourselves with the neighborhood and to explore the area for likely spots to have a bite to eat, we could tell that things had changed dramatically from when we had lived there. Where once it was difficult to find a decent meal, now there are ubiquitous Thai restaurants and plenty of places to enjoy varied cuisine from vegan to steak, Mexican to ramen. So it was with great delight when we came upon an Ollie’s situated mid–block on 42nd Street between 9th and 10th Avenues.

It was late afternoon when we entered and since it was early for the dinner crowd, there weren’t many patrons. Even so, the waitress seated us at a table nestled in a recessed nook against the wall, directly adjacent to an Asian man. After perusing our menus, Shya and I placed our orders and, sipping hot tea, sat back to wait.

Our neighbor had clearly ordered before we did, so it was only natural that he be served first.I was getting hungry by the time the waitress brought his appetizer and I was admittedly a bit nosey, too, for when I go out to eat, I frequently like to check out what other people in the restaurant are having. I have learned about many dishes I never would have considered that way. For instance, I once saw “burnt cauliflower” on a menu and the image it brought to mind lacked appeal. But after seeing caramelized flowerets mounded on someone else’s plate, I ordered some for myself and wasn’t disappointed. So when a porcelain bowl of something yummy looking that I had never seen before was placed on the table next to me, my interest was piqued. Inside a blue patterned bowl with a white interior sat a nest of long square shaped translucent noodles with bits of what looked like garlic in a spicy oil and soy based sauce.

“Excuse me,” I said. “What is that?”

It had never occurred to me that the man sitting next to me would not speak English but when he held his dish out, gesturing for me to take some, I came to realize that he did not speak my language and also that his culture was vastly different than mine. I experienced a split second of indecision. In my background eating off a stranger’s plate, albeit willingly offered, was taboo. I thought to wave my hands and say, “No, no, no! That’s alright!” But somehow this gentleman and I had bypassed the barrier of familiar speech and shared culture and we were now communicating directly. Of course a cynical view might think he made the overture as an expedient gesture since he had no words to explain, but in his eyes I saw that extending his bowl was a genuine offer.

As the man held out his bowl once again, I glanced down at my pristine chopsticks that I had rested on the edge of a small white plate in anticipation of my order of fried dumplings. Instinctively I knew that to refuse would cause offense. But of course accepting the proffered dish was not exactly altruistic. I was also very interested in what it contained.

Nodding and smiling as I said thanks, I took the bowl and deftly lifted out of a few noodles with sauce, placing them on my plate. After thanking the man, I beckoned to the server who had been watching the exchange.

“What is this?” I asked again, for I had never seen noodles of this shape and consistency.

“They are mung bean noodles with spicy sauce.” She replied.

Mung bean noodles? I had never heard of them before.

“Does it contain any fish sauce?” I asked, since I have in recent years become allergic to fish – no more General Tso’s jumbo shrimp for me.

After she assured me that they were fish free both Shya and I lifted a noodle with our chopsticks and tried a bite.

Mmmmm – cool, firm, with plenty of chilies for spice and tiny morsels of something like miso that added a burst of salt and savory at the same time.

We thanked the man once again and gave him space to enjoy his dinner. Shya and I were eventually served what we had ordered and we all ate our meals in a companionable way.

We have gone back to Ollie’s several times since then and my eyes always flick to the corner table recessed against the wall, but I’ve never seen him again. Both Shya and I have ordered mung bean noodles from time–to–time and have introduced friends to the dish as well. Whether we order them or not, we now see them on the menu. It’s funny how my eyes skip right over those menu items that I have not experienced. It’s as if many choices don’t exist simply because they are untried or new. I don’t mind when I am out at a restaurant ordering things that are familiar, things I know I like. But there are a whole host of unknown tastes when I’m willing to be open to something new. New things are also available when I’m willing to put my knee–jerk embarrassment or pride aside and accept a willing gift from a stranger. I’m certain that fellow doesn’t even recall our paths crossing but I do. And I’m grateful for his kindness. It’s hard to guess the difference a spontaneous moment of generosity can make. I personally find our chance meeting inspiring. Contained in it is a microcosm of the sweetness that humanity has to offer.

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Since 1987, internationally acclaimed authors, seminar leaders, radio show hosts and business consultants Ariel and Shya Kane have acted as guides, leading people through the swamp of the mind into the clarity and brilliance of the moment. Find out more about the Kanes, their seminars in NYC, in the UK, Germany and Costa Rica, the Say YES to Your Life! Meetups their work has inspired, their Being Here radio show or join their email newsletter. (Link: http://www.transformationmadeeasy.com/tasteofexcellence/) Also get information about their five award-winning books. Their newest book, Practical Enlightenment, is now available on Amazon.com. (Link: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0134TK10C)

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The Kindness of Strangers By Ariel & Shya Kane

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The Kindness of Strangers By Ariel & Shya Kane

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Have you ever thought about the impact that a simple act of kindness can make, how being generous can ripple out in time and alter a person’s life forever? A young man and his buddy were incredibly kind to my wife Ariel and I and our lives have never been the same. In fact, his unhesitating willingness to be so unstinting with his knowledge, time and expertise became our springboard into the art of fly fishing and it has radically influenced our life paths.

Having grown up near the ocean in Far Rockaway, NY, I have always been drawn to fishing, but came to be a fly fisherman somewhat later in life. When I was about 50 years of age, a friend of mine mentioned in passing that I might really enjoy fly fishing and that I should look into it. Not long after, Ariel and I flew to Oregon to visit her family in her hometown of Gresham, a suburb of Portland. While there, Ariel and I borrowed her parent’s car and drove to a local sporting goods store, GI Joe’s. We walked in and saw an entire array of goods from balls and jerseys to hunting gear and guns, but right in the middle of the store there was a case that held fly fishing reels and a stand with fly rods, also. I immediately noticed that while there was at least some similarity to the spin fishing rods that I was familiar with, clearly they were different.

A young man stepped up behind the counter. He was medium tall, lean with thick dark hair, wearing a blue button down shirt and chinos. Although he was young, undoubtedly only a year or two out of high school, when he said, “Can I help you?” I thought it very likely that he could.

“What’s your name?” I asked.

“Gil.”

“Well Gil, I am interested in fly fishing but really know nothing about it.” Looking at the rods, reels, lines and other gear displayed before me I said, “If money wasn’t an issue, what would you recommend I get to get started?”

“What do you want to fish for?” He asked.

“I don’t know. What is there?”

“Well, there are trout and steelhead.” He replied.

“I guess trout then.” I said. “That is what we have in upstate New York where I live.”

Gil was indeed extremely knowledgeable. He patiently explained some of the rudimentary differences between spin and fly fishing – such as when you use a spinning rod, the heft of the lure pulls the line out behind it. But with fly fishing, the fly, so called because they were originally constructed to imitate flying aquatic insects, has virtually no weight at all. The line itself, Gil explained, has the weight and by using the rod like a lever the weighted line draws the fly behind it.

I don’t know what moved me to be so bold with this young stranger. Perhaps it was his innate kindness. Perhaps it was his experience that so outstripped mine. Perhaps it was his openness and patience. But whatever the inspiration, after I paid for and collected my exciting new purchase, I placed both hands on the edge of the counter and said, “Will you take me fishing?”

“Yes!” Gil said. “I’d be happy to!”

I don’t recall how we made all the detailed plans. I do know that Gil and his friend Rob were avid fly fisherman and that before I left that day I had Gil’s phone number and a promise for a trip to the Deschutes River in eastern Oregon.

The next day, Ariel and I flew back home to where we were living near Woodstock, New York overlooking the Ashokan reservoir. Inspired by my recent purchase, I drove to the nearest little fly fishing shop in Phoenicia. As I was standing there, looking over the confusing assortment flies one might need to fly fish in that area, a man hurried into the shop and said, “Am I too late to still take part in the fly casting class?” When the owner replied, “No we haven’t started yet.” I hastily said, “Can I come, too?”

On that day I cast a fly rod for the very first time. I then went down to the river and hooked and released my very first rainbow trout. But truth be told, that fish hooked me. Ariel soon took a class and also caught a little trout – although she and I still laugh that she caught her first fish behind her when her fly accidentally hit the water on a “bad” cast and a fish grabbed it.

In a matter of a few short months Ariel and I flew back to Oregon for our trip with Gil and his buddy Rob. It turned out that Rob had won a Driftboat in a raffle and he and Gil were prepared to not only take us down the Deschutes River, but also to provide us with an overnight camping trip. Nervous but enthusiastic, with our brand new gear including waders, we were prepared to begin an adventure. We had no clue that it would be the beginning of a way of life that would eventually take us all over the world.

Perhaps Gil and Rob had excellent teachers themselves. But whatever the reason, they were extremely patient and kind with Ariel and me. Years later, I finally caught a 180 lb. blue marlin on a fly rod off the coast of Costa Rica and Ariel has caught multiple world records with the International Game Fish Association, including the largest pacific sailfish ever recorded caught by a woman. The things they taught us on that initial trip we had mastered. But we actually began to learn them and learn them correctly right from the beginning. For instance when a powerful fish grabs your fly, you can’t immediately try to stop them as they race away or they will break off. It is true for trout and also true for a marlin or sailfish. If you want to hook a fish you can’t have a lot of extra slack in your line or they will taste the fly and spit it out before you have a chance to draw the line tight. I actually remember Gil giving Ariel gentle instructions about this on that first trip.

“Ariel, take a look at your flyline. If the fish were to hit now, would you be ready?”

She saw the big, wide and lazy S shapes of line scrolling out down the river and could see that she would have to take up the slack in order to be ready when the fish took the fly. Toward the end of the first day, not only did we catch trout, but when we got to our camping spot Gil and Rob encouraged us to keep fishing while they got out a tent and set it up for us, placing in sleeping bags they had brought for our use. Then they made us a meal over a campfire. At the end of the trip we were well satisfied, exhausted, and very grateful. Although we had paid for the food provisions, both Gil and Rob said that what they wanted in payment was…. absolutely nothing. At the end of our adventure, we asked once again to give the pair something but they said no, it wasn’t legal. They weren’t guides and said they couldn’t accept payment for the trip – it had to be a trip between friends.

Over the last 20-some years Ariel and I have gone on to catch many fish both large and small. We’ve traveled from Alaska to the tip of South America, from a river in New Mexico to deep-sea fishing in Costa Rica, from the Seychelles off the coast of Africa to the fjords of Quebec. I lost touch with Gil for many years. I tried to track him down through his family but never managed to get in touch. I wanted him and Rob to know how grateful I was and still am for all they have given me. And I wanted them to know the difference they have made in my life. I was absolutely certain that they had no idea how their kindness would make an impact.

Recently I found Gil and Rob on Facebook. Rob now owns Water Time Outfitters and Gil works for him as a fishing guide. I must admit I was surprised when I saw a current picture of them to see them both as middle-age men with the families of their own. In my mind’s eye they are still barely out of school, wide eyed youths who had time, enthusiasm, and the willingness to so generously give us a gift. I am profoundly grateful for the kindness of two strangers.

gilandshya2015

High Class Complaints by Ariel & Shya Kane

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7th Wave

July 6: High Class Complaints

Do you ever find yourself complaining about all those “complainers?” Join Ariel and Shya in this lively episode of Being Here and discover how to have a sense of humor about the workings of your mind – even when it churns out High Class Complaints.

Listen Live this Wednesday, July 6th at 9am PST / 12pm EST on the VoiceAmerica 7th Wave Channel.

After this Wednesday, you can stream or download this episode and over 400 episodes on a wide variety of topics from our archives here.

You can also subscribe to BEING HERE on iTunes!

How Do We Cope With Hate Crimes? Three Considerations by Dr. Suzanne B. Phillips

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A road sign against Hate

 

Hate crimes like the massacre that killed and injured so many in Orlando, Florida are further fueled by terrorism and are meant to instill fear and helplessness. They impact everyone, particularly those who have suffered, those who identify with them and those who love and respect them. At the worst, hate crimes isolate, denigrate, fuel more hate and steal hope. This blog proposes that Compassion, Connection and Hope serve to reduce the loss, isolation, terror, and despair.

 

Burn The List

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7th Wave

May 18, 2016: Burn the List

Do you keep lists of your partner’s transgressions – or even of your own? Ready to live your life unencumbered by resentments and regrets? Tune in to Being Here and ignite the fire to burn those lists – no matches required. Callers welcome at Tel# 1-866-472-5795!

Listen Live this Wednesday, May 18th at 9am PST / 12pm EST on the VoiceAmerica 7th Wave Channel.

After this Wednesday, you can stream or download this episode and over 400 episodes on a wide variety of topics from our archives here.

You can also subscribe to BEING HERE on iTunes!

How You & Your Child Can Thrive Through Personal Style by Hemda Mizrahi

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How You & Your Child Can Thrive Through Personal Style by Hemda Mizrahi

How can you present a true, clear message about who you are, both at home and at work? Personal Style Coach Allison Hamilton-Rohe reveals her formula during a guest appearance on my Internet radio show, “Turn the Page”

Our dialogue about launching you on your style journey continued after the show, when Allison offered an example of powerful personal style: “Look at the amazing Duchess of Windsor, whose husband literally gave up his kingdom and chose exile over life without her. While she was not a “classic” beauty, her charisma and appeal were undeniable — especially for her King!” This is one of the ways that personal style is distinct from fashion. The common personal style thread across your lifetime is YOU, what flatters and matters to you most, what you aspire to be and do.

Once you experience how the language of style can move you past image anxiety and into a more fulfilling reality, you’ll appreciate the benefits of discovering it earlier in life. Hopefully, this will motivate you to pass the learning onto younger generations, including your children and grandchildren.

Allison references Carol Dweck’s book, “Mindset: The New Psychology of Success,” in identifying ways you can support your child in achieving a positive self-image. Dr. Dweck’s research indicates that 40% of your happiness is a product of how you see yourself, and the corresponding choices you make.

As a parent or guardian, how can you help your youngster to look and feel good? These are strategies that Allison’s own kids have embraced:

ALL YOU NEED IS LOVE.
The number one thing you want to encourage, instill and empower your children to feel towards themselves, their bodies AND their style is love. You can do this any number of ways!

GIVE CONFIDENCE-BOOSTING COMPLIMENTS.
Dr. Dweck suggests offering process rather than person praise. This involves acknowledging repeatable behaviors that can reinforce a praiseworthy character trait, skill, action, or outcome. For example, rather than saying “you look pretty,” be specific about what you appreciate: “I love how those barrettes bring out the sky blue color of your eyes.”  A statement like this encourages your child to feel proud about doing something well. In contrast, “person praise” can create self-doubt when something goes awry, like the physical changes and emotional reactions that might occur at the onset of puberty!

INSIST ON LOVE.
When you’re shopping with your children or going through their wardrobes, only buy/keep things they love.  If they need a new coat, find a coat they love.  If you have a sense of their style and size, shop online with them.  You might select a few items and then ask them to look at the order before making the purchase. Ask them one question only: “Do you love what I’ve picked out for you?” If they say no, delete it. No exceptions. This sets a precedent that style is something that feels good and they can enjoy.

MAINTAIN STANDARDS.
It’s okay to insist that your children brush their hair and teeth, clean their bodies, and wear clothes that aren’t ripped. This is basic grooming. It’s important to teach your children these habits early on so they’re prepared when the time comes for them to “dress to impress.” It may take energy and patience, and consistent practice works.

Allison shares a personal illustration: “I posted a picture checklist by my kids’ door that I ask them to check everyday. They receive a star each time they complete their list. When they master a skill, I give them a bonus and we celebrate. Now, if I notice they forgot to brush their hair, all I have to say is, “Checklist?” and they go, “Oh!  Whoops!” and run back upstairs.” This tactic can be adapted to the specifics of your household. If you have a special needs child, creating a visual map of the checklist and breaking down tasks can be helpful. Teaching basic self-care is deeply important to preparing a child to be an independent adult.

ALLOW FOR PLAY.
If you’re dressing up for a party and your child is dying to wear a dress that’s a bit over-the-top, or put on lipstick, don’t sweat it.  If your kid puts on a shirt and pants that don’t match well and he’s three, let it go! If your son wears pink or your daughter wears combat boots, offer the freedom of experimentation. Allison reflects on rejoicing in her daughter’s self-expression: “I bought my daughter a button that read, “I dressed myself today. I loved posting her wacky outfits on Facebook.” Style can be fun and it allows kids to play with who they want to be. Allow your kids to enjoy it!

ENCOURAGE SELF-EXPRESSION.
Your kid is going to be who she is. If you do your job well, she’ll value her unique qualities and use them to propel her purpose in the world. If your kids settle into a style that unsettles you, have a conversation about the power of style and what it means for first impressions.  Allow your children to be in control of the message, and check in to ensure it’s the message they truly want to send. If not, work with them to change it. If your son loves his style and it STILL unsettles you, enlist a family therapist to address the underlying issues both for you and your child.

Identifying with any of these strategies as ones you’d like to adopt for yourself? Go for it!  Your example is the best guide for your children. If you’re kind to yourself, insist on love, maintain standards, allow yourself to play, and encourage your own self-expression through style, they will, too!

If you need expert guidance along the way, contact Allison through www.dailyoutfit.com. Mention this blog in booking a session on the “Work With Me” page of her site, and read on through her free newsletter and blog posts, including this one on “back-to-school” shopping sprees: http://www.dailyoutfit.com/2014/08/top-10-tips-to-make-back-to-school.html

If you haven’t yet listened to Allison’s guest appearance on my show, we invite you to learn about the three key components of her personal style formula. Find out how personal style can work for you

Be Limitless: Breaking Down Mind Barriers

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7th Wave
Be Limitless: Breaking Down Mind Barriers

LD-Main face050

We all think we understand our mind, but what if we don’t? What if we are much more than we think we are? We’ve all heard the concept that we only use 10% of our brain. But what does that mean? What’s the other 90% and how do we access it? Well, it’s actually the most powerful part of our mind, the part that can help us feel and know that we are always connected to each other, to our limitless self, to the spiritual realm, to details of our past and future, to the wisdom of the ages, and even to creativity.

As you understand the full scope of your mind, everything changes. Fears and worries, self-doubt, guilt, blame and shame begin to disappear. They become replaced with hope, compassion, love, improved health, peace and happiness. You will even see your past differently and the silver linings in every experience will become apparent.

Listen as we explore new dimensions of our own mind and learn how we are more than we think we are!

Tune in every Thursday at 8am PST to Uplift Your Life: Nourishment of the Spirit

Catching a Communicable Ease

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Catching a Communicable Ease

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Catching a Communicable Ease
by Ariel Kane

Have you ever noticed how the attitude with which you approach life influences your experience of your day and can impact the way others around you go about theirs? I once had a sweet reminder of this that had me quietly smiling to myself as I went about my day.

It was a frigid Tuesday morning in winter and my husband Shya and I had a routine appointment with our country doctor. His office is a small country affair, which looks like it belongs more in a rerun of Mayberry RFD (a television show about small town Middle America that aired from the late sixties to early seventies) with Opie and Aunt Bee than it does in modern day America. One would not guess at first glance that this doctor was one of the most caring, comprehensive and progressive doctors around. Not only is he an internist, practicing at the local hospital, but he also practices homeopathic and Ayurvedic medicines.

However, this physician is famous amongst his patients is being chronically late. We have encouraged many friends to see him but we always warn people to plan to be there for an extended period as his schedule is rarely, if ever, on time. We plan for it as well. It is part of the culture of his office. When weather permitted, we took a walk before our appointment. Arriving on time, we signed in, gave Nurse Nancy our cell number and she called us when he arrived. This allowed us to stroll over a nearby bridge spanning the Delaware River between New Jersey and Pennsylvania where we watched carp and bass and at times, shad swim down below. Snow geese frequented the shores and it was a pleasure to watch the seasons as they changed.

We also have planned in advance to be the first patients of the day as we have come to recognize that the doctor’s schedule often gets further delayed; he does not rush to get his patients done with, is really there for each one and sometimes that takes more than the 15 minutes allotted and sometimes he is delayed at the hospital due to an emergency or at the local retirement community where he is their physician on call. I have seen him on mornings when he is bright and chipper and have also seen him directly following the death of an elderly patient whom he had been treating for years.

Normally, I expect a doctor to be pretty much on time as, in my opinion, it is respectful. But with this physician, I have come to realize that if I wish to see him, it comes with his rhythm and his lack of timeliness. I then have one of two choices – surrender or complain. I choose the former. This means that Shya and I not only plan for our appointments to generally start far later than the scheduled time but also that we treat it as if this is exactly what we want.

On this particular Tuesday morning, we were called in to see him approximately an hour after our appointed time. I had been quite productive whilst waiting that day and had finished most of my emails as I had been sitting there. When the doctor touched my arm his fingers were inordinately chilly.

“Wow, Doctor, your hands are really cold this morning!” I said.

“I spent a long time in my car in the parking lot talking to the family of a patient,” he replied quietly.

While he said nothing further I imagined I heard pain in his voice. For certain the discussion he had had was a challenging one, one that truly mattered to whomever he was conversing with. I knew in an instant that he had been compassionately guiding a family through a difficult time.

Shortly thereafter I returned to the waiting room to collect my things and my coat and hat. The room, as usual had a host of patients, most of whom were obviously retired. As I removed my belongings from a chair next to a gentleman of advanced years I smiled and told him that the doctor was in now and he had just seen us so it shouldn’t be too much longer.

“How long did you have to wait, only about 8 hours?” the man asked only half in jest.

I leaned in as I retrieved my computer, which was sitting on the floor near his chair, “He was delayed in the parking lot while talking with a patient’s family. If it were my family he had been talking to I am sure I would have been happy that he took the time,” I softly said.

It was still cold outside and it took a few moments for Shya and I to don our vests, coats, scarves and hats. As we were doing so, Nurse Nancy called the gentleman with whom I had just had the exchange but he turned to the lady sitting next to him and said, “Why don’t you go first. I have the time.”

Pulling the door closed as I exited the office I smiled to myself. I realized that in a doctor’s office it is reasonable to expect that you may be exposed to a communicable disease, particularly during flu season. But on this particular chilly winter morning, at least one man had been exposed to a communicable ease and it was already spreading to those around him.

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