I was at the post office late this afternoon mailing some orders off when something caught my attention. Yes I admit it - I was eavesdropping (oh don't act like I'm the only one. lol). A guy about my age (pick a number, any number) was asking about renewing an address forward that had expired. The mail was being forwarded from his father's place to his...the problem being that his father passed away in October, so he was not able to sign the documents. I can't always explain it, but that feeling hits me every once in a while where I'm immediately taken into the moment, humbled, and extremely sad. My heart ached for this complete stranger....having just lost my father in law (coming up a year next month) I was devastated for him that he experienced the very same tragedy I watched my husband and his family experience. I couldn't stop thinking about it the entire time I finished up with the clerk. All I could do was quietly say to him, *Not to eavesdrop, but I'm sorry about your dad.* He thanked me and I was on my way.
I held it in (the time isn't always right to let it out), but I could have cried - no sobbed - the whole way home. My heart hurt for him. And all over again for my husband and his family (truly that hurt is constant).
Often when I'm driving and someone is zooming past or cutting off, etc...I try to make a special effort to be understanding, sympathetic...even sensitive to the circumstances that MAY be impacting their actions (ie. racing to the hospital for a wife or friend in labour, dying friend or family member, etc.) Does it make it right...not really...do I get frustrated...sometimes....is it always an accurate assumption - no, perhaps even rarely...but sometimes I think we can and should be a little more forgiving. Is that person in line at the store or even perhaps the clerk stressed out about something in their life and unsure or unable to properly direct that stress? Again, it doesn't make it okay....but sometimes shouldn't we just extend ourselves and show a little *understanding*?
Well, I think so. People are hurting everywhere...Not only do I think we ought to go out of our way to find more ways to help, but also to be more sensitive. We all have times in our life when we need a little ourselves.
In case you were wondering - the guy at the post office was more than polite. Despite being a sensitive subject I'm sure, he was composed and kind....though I would hope that those helping him would have shown him a little forgiveness and sensitivity should things not have worked out (they did).
So as you go through your week, just take a minute to consider the realities of all of those you come in contact with. Take an extra minute or two - show a little more patience, forgiveness, kindness....and of course,