A lowered flag, a morning salute

I went into work early this morning, thinking about all the things I needed to get done today. I stopped on my way out the door to raise the U.S. flag at my house, waited for a moment of silence, and then lowered it in honor of Heath M. Robinson. I was feeling rushed, trying to get the kids to school and was already tired when I got to work. So I decided to grab a cup of coffee at the closest Biggby. While there, I became frustrated that the cellular networks weren’t working properly and I couldn’t check in on Foursquare.

Then, on my way back to the office, I saw this majestic site:

It’s the Michigan State Capitol, with its flags lowered in honor of Heath M. Robinson and the sunrise glinting off its iconic dome. I paused, thinking what a beautiful view it was for me to witness, all alone on a chilly November morning, so I snapped a picture. Then, because I can’t stand cold weather, I hustled inside to get more of my To Do list marked off.

But then it hit me. I should be happy to be overwhelmed by a To Do list. I should be grateful that I can have such a simple life that something as silly as a failed Foursquare check-in can frustrate me. I should embrace the feeling of cold air entering my lungs. And I should value even more the hugs and kisses I got from my kids this morning as I dropped them off at school.

If you’re reading this post, you should value such things in your life, too. Because Heath M. Robinson and too many of his colleagues can no longer do any of those things. I don’t know Heath M. Robinson, and I never will. He was a Navy SEAL from Petoskey and he was killed in action in Afghanistan on Aug. 6. He was 34 years old. Today, he’s a symbol of bravery, strength, and fortitude. His memory should serve to remind all of us of those who have served and are still serving.

So I’m pushing all of my troubles aside this morning and tipping my coffee cup to that lowered flag atop the Capitol. Won’t you join me?

Thank you, Senior Chief Petty Officer Robinson. Rest in peace.