Every morning on my way home from the gym I see this cool dude walking to school. He puts a smile on my face and a beat of joy in my soul.

The dude is about 9 or 10 years old. He wears a hoodie and baggie jeans. His back pack is loaded and yet he stands tall.

Every week his hair is a different color. This morning it was green. His parents must be the coolest.

I remember when I was in my teens and going through my punk rock phase, I caught major crap from dad when he saw the pink streaks in my hair.

Perhaps dude’s parents aren’t approving but they are allowing him to express who he is. That makes them cool.

He always has a guitar strung across his chest. It’s one of those plug in electric guitars. A small one like you would use to play guitar hero. His guitar is white and it reminds of the kind of guitars the glam rock bands of the 80’s would sport. Bands like Poison and White Snake. (totally dating myself aren’t I?)

Dude walks to school, playing air guitar and singing at the top of his lungs. He seems to have no care as to who is looking at him. The other kids, crossing guard, parents dropping children off at school or even passersby like myself don’t phase him or divert him from his zone.

Everytime I see him I smile. A joy leaps up in my chest and I think to myself, “This kid is so cool.”

Dude is true to himself and his path. He’s unique and let’s his uniqueness shine. He’s going to do great things in this world because he isn’t afraid to stand out and have people gawk at him. He’s living in the moment and enjoying it. He’s a risk taker.

My encounters with cool dude last only a few seconds but they give me an added umph to my day. Whenever I get bogged down with computer work, writing or with clients I think of cool dude and laugh. The reflection puts everything back into perspective.

Don’t be afraid to shine. Be your unique self. You never know whose heart you touch in the process.

~Love, Esther



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