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Ruby McBeth: Getting a fresh start

My New Year’s resolutions this year are about facing change boldly and upgrading my attitudes.

There are three areas of change that I have faced lately.

Firstly, I completed a two-hour Zoom session called “Stay on the Road.” This is for people nearing 80 — yes, that’s me — who may have to take a road test. One thing I learned was to position the seat back so that the head rest was close to my head. The next day I was rear ended - just lightly. Although neither car or driver suffered any damage, I realized the value of their advice. The course is put on several times a year by ICBC and the Council of Senior Citizens Organizations of B.C. (COSCO).

Secondly, I read a book that helped me to work on my attitude of white entitlement. Layla F. Saad’s book is called Me and White Supremacy: Combat Racism, Change the World, and Become a Good Ancestor. Layla gives exercises to help people become aware of their prejudices and attitudes of entitlement.

Finally, I read a book about living and dying. When Breath Turns to Air is the autobiography of Paul Kalanithi, a neurosurgeon who was diagnosed with Stage 4 lung cancer at the age of 36. He began writing his life story as a final positive action when he could no longer work as a surgeon. His wife Lucy completed the story after his death. Lucy and Paul chose to have a child after he was diagnosed. The baby girl was a great comfort to Paul in his last days. Paul Kalanithi gives an example of how to live fully right to the end.

You can listen to it free on Libby. My own copy, which I had requested as a Christmas gift, arrived at my door a week before Christmas.

Gallagher’s Light Show

Once again, Sean Gallagher has opened up his property off the West Bypass road for people to drive through to see the Christmas light show. And once again more lights have been added. It really is amazing – something your grandchildren will want to see. A box has been set up by the miniature church for donations to people in need in Fort St. John and area. Last year, the Gallaghers received $15,000 which they gave away to local families.

Quote of the Week

“The greatest discovery of all time is that a person can change [their] future by merely changing [their] attitude.” — Oprah Winfrey

Happy New Year.

Ruby McBeth lives and writes in Fort St. John.

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