Seriously. What do other people think? As most of you know I spent some time in my local hospital. As a result, I came into contact with a lot of different people, strangers to me. There were the doctors of course and the nurses, patients, cleaning staff, physiotherapists, occupational therapist, technicians, the list is endless. All those people came together to make my stay, perhaps not enjoyable, but beneficial. And as I looked into their faces, I wondered… were they thinking?
I saw an elderly woman facing an uphill climb, literally. They were teaching her to do stairs again. I saw her face as she looked at the edifice in front of her. I tried to engage her but either she wasn’t in the right place emotionally or she didn’t speak the language. So, I smiled and nodded my head. She didn’t react. I wondered what was going through her mind. Was she sad, annoyed or maybe just indifferent?
I saw man who had lost both of his legs at different points. He didn’t hide his injury nor did he flaunt it. He faced his new reality and he didn’t flinch. He smiled and he joked with the staff. He smiled at me and gave me a thumbs up. It made me feel good. He was not a young man but he wasn’t done with life either.
We often judge other people based on what we see, not on what we know. That does us a disservice. People who look at us can’t know what we’re thinking, what we’re feeling. They only see what we choose for them to see. I think we do it for protection. But by shutting ourselves off, we miss so much.
As we journey through our day, we meet dozens perhaps hundreds of people, and sometimes only one or two. Each person that we interact with is a potential. Potential what you ask? Well, a potential friend, a potential business associate, a potential confidant. We can’t know who or what someone is until we have spent time with them. And perhaps the time we don’t spend with them is the missed opportunity.
I wonder about all the people I met. I know they affected me. I may not know exactly in what way but I believe I am a better person for having gone through the experience and for the people I met. These past weeks are not something I’m going to forget in a hurry and maybe that’s a good thing.
Thank you so much for all the best wishes I received. I may not have mentioned it at the time but it made a difference.