A huge maple tree came crashing down across the street from my home.
The rainstorm disappeared just as suddenly as it had made its debut, and the entire neighborhood gathered around the horizontal tree.
The massive tree blocked the entire street; thankfully no people, vehicles, or homes were in its path.
That afternoon saw none of the usual bike riding, roller-blading, and baseball games that are so common in our yard. On the day the tree fell, all the children spent their time gazing in wonder at the fallen tree and watching unfortunate drivers attempt to make U-turns as they approached the blocked-off street.
In between reminding my children not to climb the weak branches of the tree, I wondered about all the excitement.
We see upright trees on our block every single day. What makes the very same tree, in a 90 degree rotation, so fascinating?
It’s all about perspective. The very same object, word, or action can be perceived as exciting or mundane, thrilling or tragic. An upright tree is a blessedly common occurrence, and we scarcely ever give it a second glance; while a fallen tree, as a result of its unusual position, became an object of wonder.
A spilled gallon of oil on the freshly washed kitchen tiles can be seen as a calamity at this moment, or a humorous memory a decade from now.
Forgetting the GPS system at home, and getting lost on a family vacation, can be seen as terrible predicament or an opportunity for adventure and fun.
Of course, let’s never forget the famous story of horrible traffic on the way to the airport, which resulted in a family missing their flight- which subsequently crashed.
The loss a game of baseball, while disappointing for the player, can be approached as a learning opportunity for dealing with disappointments.
How many of us have been forced by circumstances beyond our control to move to another community amid tears, only to realize later that relocating was actually a blessing in disguise?
Raising children comes part and parcel with an abundance of challenges, and our attitude is what makes all the difference!