Missing a masterpiece -
Someone put a link to this story up on Facebook, and it's something I write about quite a bit here, but I've never actually seen a story or a test, where my philosophy about the things I've written were made so clear.
I'm going to give a high level overview about the story, however I want you to make sure to take time out to read it.
Here is the story.
The high level overview is that Joshua Bell, perhaps the finest violin player in the the entire world, played one of the most intricate pieces of music there is, and basically no one bothered to stop and listen. Instead, they continued on with the daily grind, and missed out on basically a once in a lifetime moment. Why?
Because they had to be at work. Or had to be at breakfast, or whatever any other "thing" they deemed was far more important than taking a moment out, and enjoy something that was obviously very exceptional. People become so engulfed and self absorbed in the grind that is life, that they can't/don't/won't see when a rare and exceptional moment is in front of them 95% of the time.
I always write about the journey we are on, and taking time out to enjoy the things that journey presents to us. I think people read it, and they think it sounds good. I don't think they end up applying it to their life most of the time, however. I don't write about the things I do because they sound good. I write about them as reminders to myself, to further enforce the the code I believe in.
Let me quickly run a test on you.
Everyone has lost someone they dearly loved. Now, when you read that, who is the first person that enters your mind? Who is it that you lost, that you dearly loved very much?
Now, what is the most important lesson you ever learned from that person?
Finally, do you think that you apply that lesson 100% of the time?
Probably not, right? That's how caught up in "life" we can get sometimes. That the most dearly loved person that we have ever lost, can cement in us a lesson that we don't even apply 100% of the time.
I actually can say that I have, and do, apply the lesson I learned from Marty 100% of the time. That is, always let your closest friends know how much they mean to you, and that you love them.
The issue is, most people don't apply all of these great "sayings" and "mottos" to their life. It generally takes a life changing event for someone to apply a lesson learned. To grok that lesson. And it's because they had no context before then, on how to apply it. So when someone tells you, "takes chances, try new things, live an interesting life!" or "take time to stop and smell the roses", you may never REALLY apply those lessons until you have a life changing event. Maybe you almost get killed, or maybe you were just one of the people that walked by the violin player and read about it later, and finally it resonated with you. That you missed out on something special because "I was headed to work". Well you missed out on LIFE because you were headed to work.
I have had many a day where I drove to work, and barely remember the drive in. That's only 15 minutes, but how many minutes does it take to get into a car accident and be gone forever? Seconds. There's 900 seconds in 15 minutes. That's a lot of chances to die.
This past week there was an awful shooting. I know for certain, every one of those parents would give whatever they could give to have 3, 5, 10, 15 seconds back with their child just to put their arms around them one last time and say goodbye. To kiss their cheek or caress their hair. To see their warm and tender smile and face, one last time.
Whether it's your brother, sister, father, mother, or child there are many times they are playing the violin for us, a masterpiece, and we casually stroll on by because "life" has us more distracted.
You won't always have a second chance to hear that masterpiece played again.
It's hard to always remember to listen to the masterpiece because life so often deafens us to it. Its sweet melody is drowned out by work, bills, jobs, school, training, and other trivial things that seem to roar so loudly to us, when it should be nothing more than a whisper in comparison.
Whatever you do today, if there are just two lessons to learn from what happened at Sandy Hook, and from reading this blog post, it is this. Listen to the masterpiece that the people we love play daily in our life. Take time to stop and enjoy it. It may not be there for later when you "have time for it".
The second thing is this. Remember the name of a child that lost their life, instead of talking about gun control or sensationalizing the awful person behind this tragedy.
Emilie Parker. You will be missed. Though I never knew you, I am sure you played a wonderful masterpiece for someone, somewhere, in the limited time you had here.
I wish everyone well on this Monday.