Wednesday, July 13, 2011

A Story before Sleep

Here’s some all-purpose advice from Mabel, a 3-year-old friend who lives near Bristol, England. The story is conveyed by her grandfather, Richard, a friend of much, much longer standing.

Mabel is being visited by another small girl for an overnight. Mabel’s parents are socializing with the girl’s parents while the two children are sent off to the bedroom.

Richard reports that Mabel’s mom, Ruth, checks up occasionally on the two “to find that they have transformed the bedroom into a dance hall, then a pirate ship. At last, the kids snuggle themselves down and Mabel reads a goodnight story to her companion.”

When Ruth peeks in again, it seems that Mabel hasn’t realized that a goodnight story is just that — an end-of-the-day, drop-off-to-sleep event. “Every time the friend nods off Mabel shouts, ‘Wake up! We aren't at the end of the story!’”

Richard shared the story with me yesterday and throughout the day the line kept coming back like a refrain as I encountered life’s little challenges and opportunities.

“Wake up!” I’d say to myself. “We aren’t at the end of the story!”

Good advice. I will use it today and until I exhaust my tomorrows.

“Wake up! We aren’t at the end of the story....”

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