The Idea Dude

CONNECTING THE DOTS ONE AT A TIME

Thursday, December 31, 2009

One minute to midnight

New Year for many means a new start, closing an old chapter, a time for resolutions, a festive point of the year. For me, it has always been anti-climatic. Perhaps, it is because no matter how hard we wish or hope, hardship in December tends to follow its course in January. Resolutions are quickly broken. Winter is a little harsher and the reality of January sets in. Whatever was tough on 31 December, didn't magically disappear on January 1 or 2 or 3 for that matter. Humbug.

Until last year.

An opportunity save a tiny life changed all that. A gift to both the boy and me. Looking back exactly one year later, it is one of those moments where 30 seconds either way would have surely meant he would not see a day in 2009 and for me, it meant each New Year would continue to be a humbug event. I still shiver every time think of that defining moment.

New Year's eve will never be the same again. It has become a reminder to me to be grateful and humble. Yes, we are indeed the masters of our destiny and yet our ship is dependent on the favorable winds of fortune.

I still strive for success, financial security, worldly goals and other aspirations. But I am now reminded more so on this day, that the most worthy thing I can ever do is how I can save or change a life.

Each day dawns and presses upon me the stresses of the day. I forget the best questions I should ask before I rise from my bed.

  • Whose life can I make a little easier today?
  • What kind words can I convey that will sooth a soul?
  • Which words of encouragement can inspire actions that exceed expectations?
  • What gesture will strengthen a relationship?
  • Which burden can I lessen by lending a patient ear?


In the hustle and bustle, I forget that,

  • Smiling is irresistible
  • The best gift is a hug
  • A kiss is never given in vain
  • Find good in others is the prelude to praise
  • To be grateful for small mercies
  • True giving has no reservations


Today, I am reminded of these things. Every minute of our lives should be lived as if it is one minute to midnight. We cannot choose our destiny, but we can choose the legacy we leave behind.

Tomorrow we can say Happy New Year! Should we not wake up each morning and declare Happy New Day!


  • If you had one breath left, what would you say?
  • If you could gaze on one last thing, what would it be?
  • If you could receive one last kiss, who would it be?


If you had only one minute to midnight, how would you live?

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