This morning my husband is at the auto repair shop with his car. I am taking advantage of the peace and quiet at home to work more on this blog. While doing so, I am listening to flute music played by the incomparable James Galway. One song in particular captured my attention. It is the Christmas carol “Bring a Torch, Jeanette, Isabella.” In my head I began to “sing along” in French. When I was in junior high school, our French teacher had us learn several Christmas carols in French, one in Latin, and one in German. Thinking of this song caused me to recall another French Christmas song that I sang last December. I was in the rehab center then — certainly the only time I have spent the Christmas holiday in a rehab center!
A Kind Lady
My regular occupational therapist didn’t have an appointment with me that day. I was with an unfamiliar therapist, whose name regrettably escapes my memory. However, I shall always remember her and her kindness. That’s not to say that my other therapists, including my primary ones, Margaret and Chris, weren’t kind to me also. They were all extraordinary. At the gym she had me get on the arm “bike” machine. Then she wanted me to lift myself out of the wheelchair by using just my arm strength. I was not to use my legs. At that time I had been in the rehab program for a few days and had made some progress. So maybe… just maybe! I tried to do what she asked, but even though I pushed up as hard as I could, my bottom wouldn’t budge. Whether it was the stress of what I had recently been through, the emergency trip via ambulance to the hospital, a week spent in the hospital, and now spending Christmas away from home, I don’t know. All I know was that I was so disappointed in myself that I cried. My therapist knew I was tired and discouraged. As our therapy session was ending soon, she told me that she would take me back to my room. We started talking about Paris. She suggested that we sing a French Christmas carol together. So on the way back to the room, we sang “Il est né, le divin Enfant.” I shall never forget this kind lady. Merci beaucoup. Vous êtes très gentille.
So take the time for patience and kindness. You never know who is observing you, and you don’t know what a kind word or act will mean to someone. It could be what this person needs to keep going. Kindness always matters.