In your sig you have "Treat your family..." Did that come out of you or did you read it, hear it somewhere else?
It's really good. Very thought provoking.
Well I heard this saying from a buddy of mine Mike Greene who worked with me at Winn Dixie back in 1996...
It makes sense because there are things we would say to our family that we would never say to our friends... Just because we are family should not grant us license to say or be so ugly to our family members...
And if we treat our friends like our family and treat them like our family then it helps create a stronger bond with them....
I remember that a number of sayings I have heard over the years... This one really really struck me has well...
Candidly I remember what my aunt Irene told me in August of2008 in my mom's foyer... When taking care of patients who may not always talk to you... They still hear you... They feel your presence and how you are with them...
Very, very true... I had a resident/patient who I always spoke to... Put my arm around her... Always did this when I gave her medication to her... She never spoke for 8 months I had been with her.... Then one afternoon after I had given her medication to her she said, "thank you"... Plain as day... I could have just about fell over when I heard her say that to me. It reminded me instantly what my aunt had told me 8 years earlier... Amazingly in the summer of 2017 this same resident/patient had a period of about a month to where she was talking a good bit regularly in that time... Her and I had a number of good talks in that time... The lady was 99 years old at that time... It really was something special. And one evening after I had given her medication to her she purposely reached out and grabbed my hand and pulled it up and held it against her face... Hard to articulate what that does to you... Makes you think... And know what you had heard years before was so very true. To understand that was someone's mother, grandmother, great grandmother... And to think how one would want their mother or grandmother to be treated... I know as a man... I know how I'd want my mother to be treated like... Makes you think.
Boy, this reminds me of a time in college when I learned a big lesson about making assumptions.
A friend of mine moved off campus into a room in a house owned by a lady with a severely disabled son. A grad student also lived with them and helped take care of the boy, I think he got room/board and a small salary...my buddy was just a renter. The boy's dad had left long ago, the mom said he had no interested in caring for a disabled child but I didn't have any independent verification of that.
I think the boy was something like 12 or 13, he was in a wheelchair and his ability to control his movements seemed pretty limited. After being around him a few times, I assumed that he was nonverbal and not very aware of his surroundings even though his mother talked to him all the time. One time when I was visiting, the grad student was not around and the mom asked me to help stretch the boy's legs out...I think she was mad at my friend about something and didn't want to deal with him. I was happy to help her out, but honestly kind of treated the kid like he was a lump of clay...I wasn't rough with him or anything like that, but I didn't talk to or smile at him while we were working with him.
Not long after that, the mom and the grad student were in goofy moods when I was visiting and having a fake argument about which one the boy liked better...the guy swore that it was him and kept asking the boy to tell everybody he was the favorite.
The kid then smiled and said softly, but very clearly, "Mom".
This just about floored me, and after pondering this revelation for a few seconds I had to leave the room because I was about to burst into tears...I felt so ashamed for assuming that the kid wasn't really there because of his physical issues. I really felt like the lowest of the low for a while for not recognizing this boy as a person.
After talking to the mom more, I learned that her son could read, had friends at school, and quite a sense of humor...it was just very difficult for him to express himself because of his condition. It seemed like getting a word out was quite an effort for him...I thought about how terrible it must have been to have an active mind with a body that made it hard for him to interact with the world.
I always made a point of seeking out the boy on future visits and asking how he was doing and generally being as pleasant as I could...I never got an answer other than a smile, but that was enough.