Today, there's probably seven inches of snow to be cleared, and my husband is out doing it.
The husband is out clearing our sidewalk and the sidewalks of all of our neighbors on both sides of the street. He even clears the walk of the 85 year old woman and her 80 year old neighbor on the street behind us.
He does this because he likes to clear snow. He does it as an act of kindness, a small gift for someone's day. He does it because he can. He does it because he was raised that shoveling your own walk is pretty dumb when everyone's needs to be shoveled.
He does it for the old people who live in the apartment building a few houses down and the folks who shuffle to the bus for work. They're up in the wee hours and home late at night. A cleared sidewalk makes their journey just a little easier.
He also does it for me. With my spinal cord injury, I fall when it's slick out. This way, he knows I can walk to the corner without falling. That's kind of a big deal in the middle of winter.
He doesn't do it for the accolades. Most of our neighbors never say thank you or acknowledge the gift in anyway.
He's out there in the cold. He's out there when his back is sore or he's worked all night. He's shoveled when he's been sick and had a fever.
I'm always so impressed by his generosity.
To me it's a true act of Lao Tzu's:
“If there is to be peace in the world,
There must be peace in the nations.
If there is to be peace in the nations,
There must be peace in the cities.
If there is to be peace in the cities,
There must be peace between neighbors.
If there is to be peace between neighbors,
There must be peace in the home.
If there is to be peace in the home,
There must be peace in the heart.”
Or the song - Let peace begin with me.
Thank you, husband, for generally being awesome.