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'We Have Two Choices'

A True Story

Jerry was the kind of guy you love to hate. He was always in a good mood and always had something positive to say.

When someone would ask him how he was doing, he would reply, "If I were any better, I would

be twins!"

He was a unique manager because he had several waiters who had followed him around from restaurant to

restaurant. The reason the waiters followed Jerry was because of his attitude.

He was a natural motivator. If an employee was having a bad day, Jerry was there telling the employee

how to look on the positive side of the situation.

Seeing this style really made me curious, so one day I went up to Jerry and asked him, "I don't get it!

You can't be a positive person all of the time. How do you do it?"

Jerry replied, "Each morning I wake up and say to myself, Jerry, you

have two choices today. You can choose to be in a good mood or you can

choose to be in a bad mood.' I choose to be in a good mood. Each time

something bad happens, I can choose to be a victim or I can choose to

learn from it. I choose to learn from it. Every time someone comes to

me complaining, I can choose to accept their complaining or I can point

out the positive side of life. I choose the positive side of life."

"Yeah, right, it's not that easy," I protested.

"Yes it is," Jerry said. "Life is all about choices. When you cut away

all the junk, every situation is a choice. You choose how you react to

situations. You choose how people will affect your mood. You choose to

be in a good mood or bad mood. The bottom line: It's your choice how

you live life."

I reflected on what Jerry said. Soon thereafter, I left the restaurant

industry to start my own business.

We lost touch, but often thought about him when I made a choice about

life instead of reacting to it.

Several years later, I heard that Jerry did something you are never

supposed to do in a restaurant business: he left the back door open one

morning and was held up at gunpoint by three armed robbers. While

trying to open the safe, his hand, shaking from nervousness, slipped off

the combination. The robbers panicked and shot him. Luckily, Jerry was

found relatively quickly and rushed to the local trauma center. After

18 hours of surgery and weeks of intensive care, Jerry was released from

the hospital with fragments of the bullets still in his body.

I saw Jerry about six months after the accident. When I asked him how

he was, he replied, "If I were any better, I'd be twins. Wanna see my

scars?" I declined to see his wounds, but did ask him what had gone

through his mind as the robbery took place. "The first thing that went

through my mind was that I should have locked the back door," Jerry replied.

"Then, as I lay on the floor, I remembered that I had two choices: I

could choose to live, or I could choose to die. I chose to live.

"Weren't you scared? Did you lose consciousness?" I asked.

Jerry continued, "The paramedics were great. They kept telling me I was

going to be fine. But when they wheeled me into the emergency room and

I saw the expressions on the faces of the doctors and nurses, I got

really scared. In their eyes, I read, 'He's a dead man. " I knew I

needed to take action."

"What did you do?" I asked.

"Well, there was a big, burly nurse shouting questions at me," said Jerry.

"She asked if I was allergic to anything. 'Yes,' I replied.

The doctors and nurses stopped working as they waited for my reply. I

took a deep breath and yelled, 'Bullets!'

Over their laughter, I told them, 'I am choosing to live. Operate on

me as if I am alive, not dead."

Jerry lived thanks to the skill of his doctors, but also because of his

amazing attitude. I learned from him that every day we have the choice

to live fully. Attitude, after all, is everything.

You have 2 choices now:

1. Save this, or

2. Forward it to people you care about.

Hope you will choose No. 2.

~~Author: Francie Baltazar-Schwartz~~

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