Mr. Rogers Lowered My Blood Pressure

There’s something about that man.

When I was pregnant with our first child, my doctor was concerned about my blood pressure.  It wasn’t high enough to warrant bed rest, but it was higher than normal.

Fortunately, I had a job where I could go home at lunch, and the lunch hour wasn’t actually an hour—it was more like 90 minutes. So, when I went home on my break one day, I sat down, put my feet up and spent a blissful 30 minutes watching...Mr. Rogers.

I loved those 30 minutes.

For half an hour, there was a nice, rational person offering unconditional love and support. He told us how to deal with feeling angry and sad. He celebrated with his friends. He introduced us to new things. But mainly, he was calm and nice. And he believed we could all be calm and nice. And, in fact, we had an obligation to be calm and nice.  

Wouldn’t it be great if everyone watched 30 minutes of Mr. Rogers every day?

Sure, not everyone would receive the message, and some people would surely belittle a person who believes nice is, well, nice. But many people would return to the world feeling a little calmer, a little more tolerant, a little more loved (and definitely with lower blood pressure!). And, in turn, they would be a little more level-headed when things went wrong, and a little more forgiving of people who voiced a different opinion.

And they might even love people a little more—even when it’s hard.

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