Friday, February 28, 2014

Choices

This must be my inspirational week. :)

What would you do?....you make the choice. Don't look for
 a punch line, there isn't one. Read it anyway. My question is:
 Would you have made the same choice?

At a fundraising dinner for a school that serves children with 
learning disabilities, the father of one of the students delivered
 a speech that would never be forgotten by all who attended. 
After extolling the school and its dedicated staff, he offered
 a question:

'When not interfered with by outside influences, everything nature does,
is done
 with perfection.yet my son, Shay, cannot learn things as other children do. 
He cannot understand things as other children do. Where is the natural order of things
 in my son?'

The audience was stilled by the query.

The father continued. 'I believe that when a child like Shay, who was mentally and 
physically disabled comes into the world, an opportunity to realize true human nature
 presents itself, and it comes in the way other people treat that child.'

Then he told the following story:

Shay and I had walked past a park where some boys Shay knew were playing baseball. 
Shay asked, 'Do you think they'll let me play?' I knew that most of the boys would not
 want someone like Shay on their team, but as a father I understood that if my son
 were allowed to play, it would give him a much-needed sense of belonging and some
 confidence to be accepted by others in spite of his handicaps.

I approached one of the boys on the field and asked (not expecting much) if Shay could play. 
The boy looked around for guidance and said, 'We're losing by six runs and the game is
 in the eighth inning. I guess he can be on our team and we'll try to put him in to bat in
 the ninth inning.'

Shay struggled over to the team's bench and, with a broad smile, put on a team shirt. 
I watched with a small tear in my eye and warmth in my heart.. The boys saw my
 joy at my son being accepted.In the bottom of the eighth inning, Shay's team scored
 a few runs but was still behind by three.

In the top of the ninth inning, Shay put on a glove and played in the right field. 
Even though no hits came his way, he was obviously ecstatic just to be in the game
and on the field, grinning from ear to ear as I waved to him from the stands.

In the bottom of the ninth inning, Shay's team scored again. Now, with two outs
 and the bases loaded, the potential winning run was on base and Shay was 
scheduled to be next at bat. At this juncture, do they let Shay bat and give away their
chance to win the game?

Surprisingly, Shay was given the bat. Everyone knew that a hit was all but impossible
because Shay didn't even know how to hold the bat properly, much less connect with
the ball.

However, as Shay stepped up to the plate, the pitcher, recognizing that the other team
was putting winning aside for this moment in Shay's life, moved in a few steps to lob
the ball in softly so Shay could at least make contact.

The first pitch came and Shay swung clumsily and missed. The pitcher again took a few
 steps forward to toss the ball softly towards Shay.As the pitch came in, Shay swung at
 the ball and hit a slow ground ball right back to the pitcher. The game would now be over.

The pitcher picked up the soft grounder and could have easily thrown the ball to
the first baseman. Shay would have been out and that would have been the end of
the game.Instead, the pitcher threw the ball right over the first baseman's head, 
out of reach of all team mates.

Everyone from the stands and both teams started yelling, 'Shay, run to first! 
Run to first!'

Never in his life had Shay ever run that far, but he made it to first base.He scampered 
down the baseline, wide-eyed and startled. Everyone yelled, 'Run to second, 
run to second!' Catching his breath, Shay awkwardly ran towards second, 
gleaming and struggling to make it to the base.

B y the time Shay rounded towards second base, the right fielder had the ball. 
The smallest guy on their team who now had his first chance to be the hero for his team. 
He could have thrown the ball to the second-baseman for the tag, but he understood
the pitcher's intentions so he, too, intentionally threw the ball high and far over the
third-baseman's head.

Shay ran toward third base deliriously as the runners ahead of him circled the bases
toward home. All were screaming,'Shay, Shay, Shay, all the Way Shay.'

Shay reached third base because the opposing shortstop ran to help him by turning
him in the direction of third base, and shouted, 'Run to third! Shay, run to third!'

As Shay rounded third, the boys from both teams, and the spectators, were on their
feet screaming, 'Shay, run home! Run home!'

Shay ran to home, stepped on the plate, and was cheered as the hero who hit the
grand slam and won the game for his team. 'That day', said the father softly with tears
now rolling down his face, 'the boys from both teams helped bring a piece of true love
and humanity into this world'.

Shay didn't make it to another summer. He died that winter, having never forgotten
being the hero and making me so happy, and coming home and seeing his mother
tearfully embrace her little hero of the day!

NOTE FROM Ginger: As an author, I respect this piece as a good work of fiction. 
I would love nothing more than to believe this wonderful act of kindness and grace actually
 happened, but I live in the real world and children learn from their parents, and parents 
bicker over everything from parking places to shopping carts. I've been out shopping, 
at a time of the year when "Peace on Earth and Goodwill Towards Men" is supposed to
 have special meaning, but it doesn't. Christmas seems to bring out the worst in us...
something we need to work on. But, I'm posting this today,partly because of what follows,
but with the hope this post might inspire us all to think twice and "pay it forward" 
by setting a better example for our children and grandkids.

AND NOW A LITTLE FOOT NOTE TO THIS STORY:

We all send thousands of jokes through the e-mail without a second thought,
 but when it comes to sending messages about life choices, people hesitate.

The crude, vulgar, and often obscene pass freely through cyberspace, but public
 discussion about decency is too often suppressed in our schools and workplaces.

If you're thinking about sharing this message, chances are that you're probably trying
to figure out the'appropriate' ones to receive this type of message Well, the person who
 shared this with you this believes we all can make a difference.

We all have thousands of opportunities every single day to help realize the 'natural order 
of things.'

So many seemingly trivial interactions between two people present us with a choice:

Do we pass aloqng a little spark of love and humanity or do we pass up those opportunities
and leave the world a little bit colder in the process?

A wise man once said every society is judged by how it treats it's least fortunate amongst
them.

You now have two choices:

1. Forget you read this.

2. Share the url with your friends.

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

THE CRABBY OLD MAN - Sharing a Poem

www.centrifugeleadership.com
I was really touched by this poem and felt
the need to share.  I've been thinking a lot about
 my own age recently, and having a hard time
believing I just turned 68.  In my mind, I'm not
anywhere close, but my body is saying otherwise.

This poem reminded me so much of my
grandfather who passed years ago from
Alzheimers...alone, in a rest home.
His family can only pray now that he realized in
his diminished capacity how much we truly
loved him, that we visited and mourned his
passing.

The Crabby Old Man

When an old man died in the geriatric ward of a small hospital near Tampa,
Florida, it was believed that he had nothing left of any value.
Later, when the nurses were going through his meager possessions, They
found this poem. Its quality and content so impressed the staff that
copies were made and distributed to every nurse in the hospital.

One nurse took her copy to Missouri. The old man's sole bequest to
posterity has since appeared in the Christmas edition of the News Magazine
of the St. Louis Association for Mental Health. A slide presentation has
also been made based on his simple, but eloquent, poem.


What do you see nurses? ....What do you see?
What are you thinking......when you're looking at me?
A crabby old man,.....not very wise,
Uncertain of habit ........with faraway eyes?

Who dribbles his food.......and makes no reply.
When you say in a loud voice ....."I do wish you'd try!"
Who seems not to notice ....the things that you do.
And forever is losing .............. A sock or shoe?

Who, resisting or not...........lets you do as you will,
With bathing and feeding ..... The long day to fill?
Is that what you're thinking?.......Is that what you see?
Then open your eyes, nurse......you're not looking at me.

I'll tell you who I am .......... As I sit here so still,
As I do at your bidding,.......as I eat at your will.
I'm a small child of Ten.......with a father and mother,
Brothers and sisters ........who love one another

A young boy of Sixteen ....with wings on his feet
Dreaming that soon now..........a lover he'll meet.
A groom soon at Twenty ........my heart gives a leap.
Remembering, the vows........that I promised to keep.

At Twenty-Five, now .......... I have young of my own.
Who need me to guide ....And a secure happy home.
A man of Thirty .......... My young now grown fast,
Bound to each other ....... With ties that should last.

At Forty, my young sons ...have grown and are gone,
But my woman's beside me.......to see I don't mourn.
At Fifty, once more, ......... Babies play 'round my knee,
Again, we know children ....... My loved one and me.

Dark days are upon me ...... My wife is now dead.
I look at the future ............I shudder with dread.
For my young are all rearing......young of their own.
And I think of the years...... And the love that I've known.

I'm now an old man........and nature is cruel.
'Tis jest to make old age ........look like a fool.
The body, it crumbles..........grace and vigor, depart.
There is now a stone........where I once had a heart.

But inside this old carcass ..... A young guy still dwells,
And now and again .......my battered heart swells.
I remember the joys.............. I remember the pain.
And I'm loving and living.............life over again.

I think of the years ..all too few......gone too fast.
And accept the stark fact........that nothing can last.
So open your eyes, people .........open and see..
Not a crabby old man.....Look closer....see........ME!!

Remember this poem when you next meet an older person who you might brush
aside without looking at the young soul within.....we will all, one day,
be there, too!

The best and most beautiful things of this world can't be seen or touched.
They must be felt by the heart.

I'm trying hard to see the person behind the mask that nature slapped on me. *smile* 

Monday, February 24, 2014

ARE YOU A BUCKET FILLER OR A DIPPER?


 Author Unknown, Source Unknown - posted by Ginger

 This is something I found on the internet that I found extremely touching, and oh so true. You have heard of the cup that overflowed. This is a story of a bucket that is like the cup, only larger, it is an invisible bucket. Everyone has one. It determines how we feel about ourselves, about others, and how we get along with people. Have you ever experienced a series of very favorable things which made you want to be good to people for a week? At that time, your bucket was full.

 A bucket can be filled by a lot of things that happen. When a person speaks to you, recognizing you as a human being, your bucket is filled a little. Even more if he calls you by name, especially if it is the name you like to be called. If he compliments you on your dress or on a job well done, the level in your bucket goes up still higher. There must be a million ways to raise the level in another's bucket. Writing a friendly letter, remembering something that is special to him, knowing the names of his children, expressing sympathy for his loss, giving him a hand when his work is heavy, taking time for conversation, or, perhaps more important, listing to him. When one's bucket is full of this emotional support, one can express warmth and friendliness to people. But, remember, this is a theory about a bucket and a dipper.

 Other people have dippers and they can get their dippers in your bucket. This, too, can be done in a million ways. Lets say I am at a dinner and inadvertently upset a glass of thick, sticky chocolate milk that spills over the table cloth, on a lady's skirt, down onto the carpet. I am embarrassed. "Bright Eyes" across the table says, "You upset that glass of chocolate milk." I made a mistake, I know I did, and then he told me about it! He got his dipper in my bucket!

 Think of the times a person makes a mistake, feels terrible about it, only to have someone tell him about the known mistake ("Red pencil" mentality!) Buckets are filled and buckets are emptied ? emptied many times because people don't really think about what are doing. When a person's bucket is emptied, he is very different than when it is full. You say to a person whose bucket is empty, "That is a pretty tie you have," and he may reply in a very irritated, defensive manner. Although there is a limit to such an analogy, there are people who seem to have holes in their buckets.

When a person has a hole in his bucket, he irritates lots of people by trying to get his dipper in their buckets. This is when he really needs somebody to pour it in his bucket because he keeps losing. The story of our lives is the interplay of the bucket and the dipper. Everyone has both. The unyielding secret of the bucket and the dipper is that when you fill another's bucket it does not take anything out of your own bucket. The level in our own bucket gets higher when we fill another's, and, on the other hand, when we dip into another's bucket we do not fill our own ... we lose a little. For a variety of reasons, people hesitate filling the bucket of another and consequently do not experience the fun, joy, happiness, fulfillment, and satisfaction connected with making another person happy. Some reasons for this hesitancy are that people think it sounds "fakey," or the other person will be suspicious of the motive, or it is "brown-nosing." Therefore, let us put aside our dipper and resolve to touch someone's life in order to fill their bucket.

Emotional Involvement in a Story by Connie Vines

Check out Connie Vines Books We Love author page for her books http://bookswelove.net/authors/vines-connie/ Are you ever emotionally...