I almost seriously hurt someone yesterday. Driving back to my home office after a lunch meeting, a teenage boy ran across the street against the light. He didn’t see me coming. I slammed on the brakes. Loose items went flying. The screech of brakes alerted him to danger and he reeled back. Through the open window, I saw the stunned look on his face, heard his quick, deep gasp for air and a quiet “oh sh**”.
If either one of us had been a second slower, all the things that I absolutely had to get done by the end of the day would have been completely irrelevant. If either one of us had been one second slower, the things that had him running across the street would have been of absolutely no consequence.
And as I continued my drive, shaken and thankful, I also realized that if either one of us had been one second slower, fault would have been of no consequence. Lives would have been irrevocably changed.
We plan and that’s a good thing. I’m not going to change that. But, after yesterday, I am going to remember to hug the ones I love a little tighter, to forgive a little faster, to be very careful about placing blame and to put my “to-do” list in perspective. Life can change in the blink of an eye.