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In Plain Sight

posted Mar 16, 2017, 8:00 PM by Heather Harrison

Last month I had dinner with my parents and their 80-year-old college friends Stephanie and Stan.  I listened intently as their conversation wove seamlessly between college life in the 50’s, grandkids of today, careers which had successfully ended and what it felt like to grow older.  I asked them if they had a chance to do life over again, what would they do differently.  The following story ensued: 

Stephanie, shared how she and Stan had recently sold their family house of 55 years to a great young couple and moved to a smaller place.  She reminisced about how, for 30 years she had tried to cajole Stan into ripping up their carpet and replacing it with hard wood floors.  She could picture how beautiful the floors would be and how relieved she would be to throw away the worn-out carpet.  Stan, a conservative Midwestern, deemed it completely unnecessary and   unsatisfactory to have cold wood floors vs. the warm carpeted floors, especially during the cold Iowa winter months.  Stephanie admitted she never really gave up trying to convince Stan how great it would be to have the hard wood floors. 

A few months after the young couple moved into their home, Stephanie and Stan were invited over for dinner.  When Stephanie walked in the house the first thing she noticed was the beautiful hard wood floors.  “Oh, she said, I wanted to put these floors in here for the last 30 years.”  The young woman replied.  These are the original floors.  All we did was rip up the carpet!

As I listened to this story I was struck by how often the things we want the most are literally right in front of us, or in this case right below us.  What do you find yourself consistently desiring?  Time, space, love, friendship, adventure, advancement.  Before you waste 30 years pining for it, stop and take an honest inventory of where you are right now.  How might you be able to find what you genuinely desire, right where you are?

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