It’s important to appreciate what you have, choose to be happy
By Joe Black | (email@example.com)
The Lady Who Cuts My Hair has accused me on a couple of occasions of seeing the world through rose-colored glasses (if that’s a metaphor that you don’t understand, Google it up) but I’m capable of getting down too.
Like just the other day. I was really, really tired. As in, dinner-is-over-are-you-ready-for-bed-yet tired. There had been some tough issues to deal with at work and I hadn’t slept real good the night before and I’m getting older but you already knew that.
I was beginning to think that maybe those birthday candles had finally caught up with me and I was definitely feeling sorry for myself. Anyway, I was walking around looking like the weight of the world was on my shoulders. My wife noticed and asked about it.
And then I saw this video clip of the little girl throwing a baseball to start a game because her daddy was in the Middle East fighting a war that seems to be more than half a world away from us when the catcher popped his mask off and it was that same daddy come home.
And I stopped to think about my new friend and former patient whose dog just died. And that dog and the one this guy lost last year were just about the best things going on in his troubled life.
I looked at a lady that I know is a retired “lunch lady” (cafeteria worker) that has remained one of the most enthusiastic high school sports fans I know despite steadily declining health. And one of the nicest people too.
She was concerned with paying a $10 bill because she had just spent her last $10. No mention of eating or other expenses. She wanted to make sure she could meet her obligations.
Then just yesterday, I was behind a vehicle traveling down 321 traveling so slowly that other cars were backing up behind it. The driver then pulled off and began driving down the shoulder to let cars go by, but he kept moving.
I’m gonna bet that this vehicle was probably going as fast as it could go. The driver and his young family were maybe headed home, maybe having gone to the grocery store or to the doctor or something. I know I’m jumping to some conclusions here but I believe I may be guessing correctly.
If all that is true, then it would be easy to then assume that he couldn’t afford to get his vehicle fixed. But it was probably their only means of transportation and so off they go.
Can you imagine how embarrassing this would be for this young man? Trying to make ends meet and put food on the table and yet driving a vehicle that would barely get them around? How powerless that situation would make him feel?
I’m in good health, the only time I’m hungry is by choice or neglect, and my truck starts when I turn the ignition every morning. So what possible reason could I have for feeling down? What burdens do I carry ... really?
Joe Black, PT, DPT, SCS, ATC is a physical therapist and athletic trainer at Total Rehabilitation and is Manager of Outpatient Rehabilitation for Blount Memorial Hospital. Write to him at (firstname.lastname@example.org)