I had been standing outside checking a load on one of the flatbed trucks when I first heard the young boys laughter in the distance.
It came from the direction of the lone house at the end of the residential street which runs parallel to the steel distribution warehouse I work at.
I was surprised when I heard it; I’ve always wondered how the family living there dealt with the constant noise from the trucks, cranes, and saws as we feed the machines which cut the large shapes from the steel mills into smaller sizes for resale.
The boy’s laughter caught my attention.
What captivated me wasn’t the laughter but the joyous energy which emanated from it, reminding me that the energy of joy is a gift that the very young share with us and hearing his laughter instantly elevated my mood.
As I turned towards it, I saw the boy sitting in a small plastic car being slowly pushed along by his father.
The sight of them together reminded me of my own similar experiences with my father and for a moment I was lost in the warm memories of the long walks my father and I often took together.
For me, those memories highlight the best parts of my childhood.
His father smiled and gave me a small wave as they passed. I waved back and then turned my attention back to the clipboard in my hand.
As I started rechecking the load on the truck, I realized there had been a potent alchemy in the sound of his laughter. It wasn’t just the sound of joy but also the simultaneous ability of his laughter and the sight of him with his father to instantly create warm memories of my own childhood.
What his laughter had done, was to shine my spirit.
Similar to the way my HSP nature can be captivated by music or artwork, I had a strong reaction to one of life’s everyday moments. I was glad I had witnessed it.
Sometimes the gifts we are given have nothing to do with commerce but everything to do with our spirit.
However, with HSP’s it works both ways.
We have an uncanny ability to shine the sprits of the people around us through our actions.
Regardless if it is through a vocation or a friendship the depth of our seeing allows us to leave a residual fingerprint of empathy on the world around us.
In my own life, I look forward to my time spent with other HSP’s because they are the people who constantly shine my spirit.
As a runner, I have found the local running community filled with HSP’s and my memories of our runs together are flavored with their non-stop empathy.
This past month, while starting training for a 50-mile ultramarathon which I’m running this spring, I commented to one of my running partners who is a very gifted HSP, that I had recently ordered a hydration vest for the race.
Her response was to ask me for the details of where I ordered it and requested I text her link of the website.
I gave her a quizzical look as this was a bit of an expense. She simply replied that there was no way she was going to let me run all of the longer training runs alone.
This was the same person who introduced me to running six years ago when I had been overweight.
As I digested her comment, I realized she has been with me as a participant or spectator at the finish line of every race I have run. So I guess I shouldn’t have been surprised when during this weekend’s run, she asked me to send her the website link to the lodge I was staying at during the marathon.
Her actions in my life reflect the innate gift that HSP’s present as they shine our spirits; creating a polished reflection of ourselves which when contemplated, brings us one step closer to experiencing the energy of joy as heard in that young child’s laughter and, as I thought back to the memories of our runs together, I couldn’t help but smile.
Who shines your spirit?