My cup of espresso warms my cold hands as I take the first sip of the morning. I catch up on emails which takes but a few minutes before moving on to the Wall Street Journal. It’s a quick read of the paper just as is my morning visit to Facebook.

I scroll through recent notifications. One Southern California friend is in India. She’s an avid traveler to places near and far. Her post of this morning is a photo of her stroking the trunk of an elephant. She’s had more than her fair share of heartache so I’m glad to see her smile. The elephant is beautifully adorned with bright paint and my friend sports a lovely henna tattoo on her hand. Elephant and friend look quite happy.

Further scrolling finds me at a post by my former Alabama neighbor. She lived directly across the street from us. We weren’t close but we’d wave our hello’s in passing each day and exchange neighborly pleasantries now and then. Diane’s post of the morning is a photo of her father, at home, now under hospice care. He’s in a hospital-type bed with family around him.  His days left on this earth are fewer than few. She says “he continues to amaze all around him with his attitude and faith.” He says, “Never give up…but there is a time for everything.”  It’s not a somber photo: There is the hint of a smile on her father’s face.  He is… at peace.  What a beautiful concept. 

My heavy sigh breaks the silence of the moment.

I sit for a moment more in the quiet of the morning pondering life and death, happiness and despair…love and it’s opposite.

I think about how some people seem to be so much better than others at smiling through pain and sadness. Nothing, for example, about my mother’s life in her final years was positive or joyful. Quite the opposite.  For me, It was a constant struggle to rise above the drama of her personality.

Yes…it is all about choice!  One breath…one step…at a time.

I say a prayer for my Alabama neighbor as her family prepares to say goodbye to their loved one.

The sun is just starting to peek up over the horizon.  Note to self on this chilly November day?  Be more mindful of spreading cheer however I can today…and everyday. 

So, this is my Tuesday bliss….