For today\s Music Mantra, I wanted to do a special tribute.
It took me hours to come up with the song to put with this post but I thought this was most suitable.
As many of our followers know, this song holds many special points for my family. Now, I thought it holds even moreso.
Yesterday, my husband and I went out to the grocery store to get a few essentials for our house. We can't afford a lot right now with him being injured, and this being a slow time for my work but you gotta do what ya gotta do, right?
As we were pulling out, we saw a man who had two handfuls of groceries struggling to walk down the sidewalk. We watched him for a few seconds, noticing that he not only struggled with holding his bags, but with walking...even having to stop every few steps to rest. Most people would have passed the man off as someone who was drunk or on drugs, but we had a feeling it was something more. My husband asked if I'd go talk to him to see if he needed help. I was reluctant at first because I know what it's like to be offered help when you didn't ask for it...but I did.
It was a gut instinct.
We pulled up around the corner from where he was walking, and I got out of the car and approached him.
"Hi there," I said, going slowly.
He paused, staring at me and didn't say anything at first.
"Um, look I noticed you are struggling a bit with your groceries and we have room in our car. I don't want to be intrusive, but would you like a ride?"
The man stared at me for a few seconds, then said, "Thank you. I would appreciate that."
I took a couple of his bags and walked with him to our vehicle, then helped him in.
During our car ride to the Alexandra Hospital, where he lives, he shared with us that he suffers from both Hodgkinson disease as well as Parkinson's. This is a man that used to work in the same industry as my husband. Yes, he did Scaffolding and other areas but they could relate to being strong-minded, strong people who aren't able to do what they used to be able to anymore. And it's no fault of his own,
This man goes from the hospital he lives in on a 1/2 hour train ride to our end of town to get his groceries. And he doesn't have to. He does it because he wants to stay active and be an active part of our society. He gets judged for how he walks, speaks and acts because most people assume something totally negative, rather than being human enough to figure out how things really are.
He appreciated that we looked beyond that.
He told us stories about what he had done in his life and a bit about what he's going through and all we did was listen and understand.
As we pulled up in front of the hospital doors, I got out to help him. He fist-bumped my husband then turned to me and hugged me. Normally, I don't usually let people hug...I need to initiate...but for some reason it seemed so appropriate. As he hugged me, he thanked me and said, "You remind me of my granddaughter. There aren't a lot of people who'd give someone like me a chance. Thank you."
As we drove away, I cried. This man will be in that hospital until his last day and yet he gets up every day to get his groceries across town to keep moving forward and prove that he can. How inspirational IS that?
Let's just say with things going on around here right now, I took it as a sign.
Be strong, embrace what and who you have in your life, and keep moving forward.
And God Bless that man.