Now Playing: The Greatest of these is Love- The Apostle Paul
Topic: Life Lessons
I had been having a rough morning...so I pulled off from the shop to grab a cup of coffee...as I was leaving I saw an old friend...a client I worked around when I worked with mentally challenged adults...I stopped and looked at her and as she looked up at me (not knowing if she would or could remember me) I asked...Do You remember me? She smiled a near toothless smile and said softly Tiiiiim! Then she sprang up and gave me a warm hug but back straightening...I was glad to see her and she was well cared for....I was and am blessed. That work was not a career but a calling!
I had not seen her for I guess maybe 6 or seven years, and as I rode the escalator down to the bottom floor back to work, I felt my eyes welling up with gratitude to God to have made a difference in her life, and she in mine! I looked for my old blog posting of years ago, and here is the story of the previous time I saw her, and my insights....
The Human Touch - A Repost
This was an old blog posting of an encounter I had just before retiring from social work to pursue my art!
The Human Touch!
I had a lesson in humanity today. As I was going about my current job, in a public place, I heard a familiar voice call my name. Tiiiiiiiimmmmm! I had not heard that voice in years, but its familiarity was imbedded in my psyche. It was a client from a program I was employed with years back. I had worked with these very special people for many years. I stopped my brisk pace to see the old friend.
I remember first meeting her as I was on my first day at that job, and she came in my office area to empty the trash. Hi I’m Genn (Name Changed) who are you? I told her and introduced myself thus starting an attachment that has lasted some nearly twelve years. Many times when I showed up for work and when she arrived, she would come to the table I was sitting at and stand by me. Sometimes I was too preoccupied to give ear to her, but most times like a child she would hang there till she got and gave a hug. The human touch. I must admit those years were some of the toughest of my life, fraught with many life lesson mistakes. Those hugs sometimes brought me back down to earth, and I thought today how much we as humans yearn for that touch from those we love, and go without. How many times others have yearned for an affirming touch from us and we stayed self absorbed and missed the moment.
She was a rotund, pint sized woman with a young child’s mind and emotions. She wore her heart on her sleeve, and it was so big that her love and care for others would fill the room. She had this big toothy grin that mirrored the joy in her heart. Her laugh was a giggle of great glee. When she was down, her sadness could fill a room also. Though sometimes she could severely get on your nerves you could not help but love her. She would sometimes come to me and proudly say “ Tim I lost fifty pounds and I would look and see no change from before, but agreed none the less, much to her joy from approval . She having a young child’s mindset, was not unlike like a grown woman in wanting approval for weight loss.
We staffers were family, just as close or closer to her than her own family. She as the other clients did not realize it was a job that we were paid for. For me, and most of us it transcended the minimal pay we received. Then one day after many years working there I left to move on in life, leaving them physically but ever being with them in spirit so to say. I still manage to drop in and see those that I know there, to catch up on things (family you know). I guess it is sort of like a homecoming.
So here I am today seeing this old friend who immediately wanted a hug, much like a child that had been away for the day at school, missing their parents. My friend was now much more aged in a different program and less toothy in her smile, hugging me again, Again once more hugging me as I was turning to leave after we talked. I had a feeling it might be the last time I may see her. I looked over at her care givers who were smiling because she was being who she was, and thought what fine people for the work they do.
I write this tonight as a statement of my thankfulness for those years, and with the hope that those who may read it, be touched to reach out to touch those around them in a positive manner. Do not miss the moment! To Those who have family members in care programs, know that those who do the work, care far more than the minimal wages they are paid. They do that work out of love for those they are hired to serve!
Thanks for dropping by and letting me share!