I remember reading an article in a men’s magazine a few years back in which the author recounted a plane crash he had been in. He was a passenger in a small plane flying through a canyon in the western United States, and the plane malfunctioned. As it careened out of control and headed toward a cliff-face, all of the other passengers were screaming in fear. But then the author heard something strange. It was the pilot. And he was yelling too, but he was yelling YeeeeHaaaaaa!
The author was the only survivor of the accident. He recalled how the pilot had seized the moment even at the brink of death, choosing to Live instead of recoil in fear.
We all have this choice. In every moment, we can choose to push away against life, or to embrace life with a YeeeHaaaa! of passion.
In our everyday lives, it’s not usually a plane crash that we’re facing. It’s a dropped dish shattering on the floor. It’s a husband or wife who says something that could annoy us. It’s a crying child or a car that won’t start. In these moments, when it is so easy to push away from life, can we instead say YeeeHaaaa! and experience those moments with passion, amazement, and delight?
After all, the shattering dish makes a sound that we don’t often get to hear, and it scatters into a pattern on the floor that is totally unique. Such a pattern will never be seen again. When a loved one says that thing that could annoy us, we’re experiencing a moment of hearing their voice, of having them in our presence, of being in the midst of a moment that will never happen again. The same goes for a crying child. And when that car won’t start, it signifies the beginning of an adventure that will probably be much more interesting than just driving to work.
Today, each of us will probably have a moment (or many!) when we feel ready to push away from life, to judge the moment as bad. Today is our opportunity to stop when that happens, to breathe in and experience the miracle of a single breath, and then to say YeeeHaaaa! and plunge into the moment with abandon. Let’s do it!