Skip to main content

The End of the World as We Know It

npr.org photo
    According to my husband, the Discovery Channel and a Mayan Calendar, long since given up for iCal or the Outlook calendar, the end of the world is scheduled to occur tomorrow, December 21, 2012. As luck would have it, a mighty storm blew in on the morning of Dec 20th.  We woke to total darkness and a primordial wind certain to be the messenger of prophetic things to come.  Had it only been Dec 21, a lot of people might have been asking a few more important questions….  “Why didn’t I believe my husband?”  “Is this really the end?”  “If I’m leaving, should I turn the iron off?”   

    With the world shrouded in darkness, I headed out into the unknown and knew this could be the beginning of the end as I got stuck in the early morning double drive-thru lane of McDonald’s, unable to move forward and unable to let those behind me place their breakfast orders.  I had become a place holder in a line of coffee crazed people, all watching the skies and waiting for the cash register to reset as the power grid faded.   As I sat there, I wondered what would happen if I had only one day left to affect great change in my life and assure the wellness of my soul.  Could purgatory possibly be a never ending drive-thru lane with 70’s music blaring for eternity and the smell of coffee just out of reach.   What if the entrance to heaven was blocked by a giant SUV that I simply could not get around, no matter which path I choose?  This was not a place I wanted to be.  What if I had missed the opportunity to do good for others and the end was now here?  Was my grand finale going to be simply me with my head on my steering wheel waiting for a cup of joe?  A new realization hit me that there was still a lot of work to be done and this could not be the beginning of the end.


    As the skies of gloom swirled overhead, and the smell of breakfast treats filled my car, I drove on mapping out a new plan for the end of the world that had nothing to do with December 21st.  My emergency preparedness stockpile of peanut butter and silver nuggets weren’t enough to survive a cataclysmic change in life as we know it.   It would require more than a package of non-hybrid survival seeds and fleece lined mittens. What is needed in the end of times is not a hoarding of food product and weaponry, but a change in culture where the goodness of one becomes contagious and spreads like a virus.   A stranger sitting in a diner, anonymously paying for dinner for others, or a retired lady giving an extra tip to the car hop could affect small change that they may carry forward.  Countries are not going to lay down their weapons and I don’t expect them too, but the goodness of man still holds great power and great promise and we can’t forget that we have the power to help one another even in the smallest and most anonymous of ways.   Kindness is more powerful than the greatest destructive force.  It is a tool we can all claim without a permit, a license, or a real understanding of it's long lasting affect.
    So, the world didn’t end today and I don’t expect it to end tomorrow, either.  Those are things we have no control over and they aren’t worth the time we take to worry about them.  I’ve checked my soul, checked my lists and checked out of the double drive-thru.  It is time to move out and do something good for someone else before the end of days actually does arrive or I am blocked from doing good things by another roadblock or giant SUV in my path.
 
Note:  It is already Dec 21 in Japan and the world is still kicking!  wooohooo

Comments

Anonymous said…
Another great story brewed in your mind from the simple smell of distant, out of reach coffee. Perhaps on the 21st you will pay for the coffee of the car in line behind you, and they too will know from your kindness that something wonderful awaits beyond tomorrow. Joy to you.

Popular posts from this blog

The Mink That Made Its Way Home

             When I was five years old, my grandmother would care for me before school each day.  She would turn the stereo console on and play big band music from the 40's.  I remember dressing up in her mink stole as we danced around the living room spinning and twirling to the classics.  She told me that one day the mink would be mine and I hoped that I would be as beautiful as she was wrapped in luxurious mink.     Time, of course, came and went and my grandmother passed away many years ago.  I have often wondered what happened to her mink stole and wished that I could wear it just one more time.  Little did I know, my grandmother had given the stole to her daughter and sometime during the early 80's when fur was not fashionable and we were wearing hideous things like leather pants and spandex, my aunt tossed the mink into the Goodwill bin near her home. She did not know that anyone actually wanted the mink and donated it to charity.  She told me she remembers lo

Dear Future Me

  Getting emails from old friends is always nice, but what a surprise to find an email that I sent to myself last year, only to be delivered exactly one year later.  It began "Dear Future Me".  This letter from my past to an older version of me had only one line.... "What have you accomplished over the past year?"   I thought this was rather brilliant as it prompted me to reflect on the year and what I had or had not accomplished.  My children were quick to interrupt my quiet reflections and point out that my one sentence email was lame and lacked details.  You can always count on your children for brutal honesty.  They educated me on how I should have talked about what I was doing a year ago and described what that day was like.  So.... with that being said, my children and I crafted our next letter... "Dear Future Us"   The letter began by explaining that it was close to midnight on a school night and my children should be in bed.  Instead, they

Peace, Love and What???

  There is nothing more precious than child innocence.  While it appears that this message may, indeed, be upside down, it seems that an upended pink ribbon is a call for better testing for earlier detection of breast cancer.  Who better to deliver such a message than a group of young girls with bright futures ahead of them?  While my daughter actually has no idea that she is holding the poster upside down, her mistake quietly sends a much more powerful message across this field. Who knows, but any one of these young ladies, excited about their part in participating in a campaign of hope, could go on to be the one to discover just such a test or cure.   So even if the symbols are upside down, or even fall to the ground, our youth are learning to be a part of something bigger than themselves and might just one day deliver this message exactly as they innocently displayed this Fall day in their youth.   Picture by Kathi Kolb www.accidentalamazon.com