Sometimes the days leading up to Christmas are so full of to-do lists the joy in the season gets lost. This week it was an old man who helped me find the spirit again.
I have a little side job that requires me to go from store to store checking and restocking toys in crane machines. Normally, my job is simple and not very taxing, but during the holiday season it seemed to quadruple in stress. At one point, I had bags of toys scattered everywhere and almost every tool I carried with me on the ground trying to fix a certain machine. A man said, “excuse me,” a couple of times, so I crawled back out of the machine to see what he wanted. It was the middle of the night, and I had been wrestling with this machine for several minutes. I really wasn’t feeling very friendly.
This bent old man apologized for disturbing me, but he wasn’t able to get his cart through the mess I’d made with my discarded toys and tools. I forced a smile I wasn’t feeling and quickly stood to move my things out of the way. Before leaving, he patted me on the shoulder. “It must be nice to have such wonderful Christmas music to listen to while you work.”
I hadn’t even noticed the music the store was piping overhead until he mentioned it. The music really was wonderful—songs about all the things that make this season the best. Just recognizing it changed my attitude. Not only did I go back to work humming the rest of my shift away, it made my whole day that much brighter.