the shiny penny syndrome

fullsizeoutput_207eKid’s collect a lot of junk.  Some of it is good junk like Lego’s and pretty dolls and some of it is utter rubbish.  Take for instance the penny.  I would walk by a penny without a second thought.  Not a kid.  Especially a little kid.  While walking in a busy parking lot, they will see the penny on the ground, stop mid stride with their mother barely keeping from tumbling head first over their little body, bend down and scoop that little treasure up.  They will turn it over in their hands, eyes wide and bright and say, “Look!  I found a penny!” as if it were the greatest treasure known to mankind.  Oh to be so easily pleased with one self!  To be so easily excited by the small gifts from the universe!

In a quest to remember those little moments, I keep a stash of the treasures that my children have discovered (I may be a bit of a junk hoarder myself).  Many of these things were discovered, marveled at, and then handed over to mom to “carry for me.”  Or maybe they were shoved into one of my pockets by little hands that were scurrying for even more treasure to hoard.  Of course, those treasures were soon forgotten until the end of the day when the clothes came off and the rocks and bits fell haphazardly to the floor.  Or they banged around in the dryer days later.  Then I remembered them, but the kids still forgot.  That’s the way it is with kids.  The greatest treasure one minute, forgotten the next.

I imagine even as adults we act like this.  The new car, the new job, the new relationship. All shiny little bits of treasure that were once so magical and desired, but once acquired quickly become old, devoid of luster, and forgotten.  If only we could maintain the feeling of finding a shiny penny.  Maybe it’s just me.  That thing I worked so hard for, dreamed about, spent my life acquiring, I’m there.  I made it.  I’m at the top of my game.  Now that I’m here, it’s not what I expected.  It lacks a certain luster.  It seems devoid of the magic.  It’s mundane and the true reason I did it -seems forgotten.  Why did I do all of this again?

I’m ready for a new adventure.  I’m ready for a new treasure.  I’m looking for a shiny penny that stops me in my tracks and makes me marvel at the strange gift from the universe.

Or I might just stick my hand in my pocket and discover that I already have that shiny penny.  I put it in my pocket a long time ago and forgot about it.  It’s been there the whole time just waiting to be rediscovered.


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24 Responses to the shiny penny syndrome

  1. Pingback: I wanna believe in magic again - (Almost) Unsalvageable(Almost) Unsalvageable

  2. JohnAmes says:

    Nice! I find the key to the “penny problem” for me anyway is meditation. It helps calm my chattering mind (somewhat) and my desire for the next penny seems to diminish.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I jumped over here from Gabe’s blog and I’m glad I did! Your words have captured our tendency as humans to be constantly looking for “the new” and forget to appreciate what we have and what we’ve accomplished. Both attributes are important, of course, but sometimes having gratitude for what we have can get lost.

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  4. I have a collection of treasures on my kitchen shelf – a smooth rock, a colored stone, a barn with a silo made from cardboard, a plastic Easter egg. They are reminders of what you write about in this poignant piece – finding the shiny pennies in life and gratitude for them.

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  5. I genuinely love it here. Your words echo many of my own sentiments (albeit far more articulately). I’ve been working on a sketch over the past few months that I’ve nearly completed. If I had to call it something, I would call it “do you still believe in magic?”
    It’s been very difficult for me to capture what I feel are the most important elements: the power and wonder that we took for granted as children; and this magic quietly faded without our being aware. It seems that even the memory of my relationship with “magic” has faded.
    Thank you so much for giving me that missing piece I needed to keep filling in the gaps!


    • Aww shucks. I’m just so overjoyed that when I slap some words down they make sense to you guys. That’s my treasure. Shared experience and emotion. That’s good stuff. I’m glad you were able to glean something from this. Shiny penny indeed. Can’t wait to read your post❤

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Love this post. It snaps us back to what life is really all about, a shiny penny. I have saved many in my 73 years and still enjoy taking them out and remembering. Well done doctor, well done. ☺

    Liked by 1 person

  7. artalexiusr says:

    beautifully put. reminded me of so many things in life.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. dawnkinster says:

    That IS the adult dilemma isn’t it. To spend our days looking for the next shiny thing or sit back and realize how good we already have it. I’m a ‘looking for the next shiny thing’ kind of person, my husband is a ‘sit and enjoy what I have right now’ kind of person. After 27 years we’ve figured out that I will spend some time out and about, and he will wait happily at home for me to come back. Compromise.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. I absolutely love what you wrote and thinking that could be a great children’s book too “The Shinny Penny”!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Deb says:

    So very true. It never hurts to remember that we likely have just what we need right under our noses if we just take the time to look.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Create Space says:

    I love this! A really heart warming story reminding us that so many special things, careers, places and people in our lives have “been there the whole time just waiting to be rediscovered”

    Liked by 1 person

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