Wednesday, February 7, 2007

Give Me the Finger

We listen to math and counting CD’s in the car so it’s not a big deal to hear counting sequences from the back of the car. Today the math skills were uttered with particular delight. 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11! 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11!!

Over and over I heard this. Finally, with great exuberance the proclamation came from my preschool age son. “Yessss! I have 11 fingers! I have 11 fingers. I’m so grateful!” The heraldry and pageantry that followed such a discovery was contagious as his twin brother, whose computation skills are suspect, confirmed the discovery and they both whooped it up in the back seat.

I’m fairly certain that in the few years since his birth he hasn’t grown another finger and I’m definitely certain that he was born with only five on each hand. The result of duplicating fingers while counting was, no doubt the cause for such joy. I guess this gives new meaning to “double digits.”

For most people, growing an additional appendage would be the thing of tabloids and alien TV shows. Generally speaking, growing an additional anything is not a cause for holiday. Not so for my son. It was genuine gratefulness for something so generous. Had I announced ice cream and Cheetos for dinner, the delight could not have been greater. Oh the things one can do with an extra finger or two!

When was the last time that I was truly grateful for a circumstance deemed “terribly unfortunate” by others? No, I don’t have genetically warped DNA that causes such growth spurts. However, as a family, we have gone through some trying times together-a job loss, a house fire, a mediocre Buckeye football season-but the best joys are the simply profound revelations that are seen only by the beholder of such beauty.

The next time a dire circumstance looks bleak and unbearable, look through the eyes of a four year old. The beauty is there, just waiting for a grateful glance. Go a head, whoop it up, even in the bad times. People may look at you like you’ve grown an extra finger, but being able to count your blessings in every circumstance is living better than you can imagine.

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