How was your trip?

May 1, 2009

So, we just got back from a truly relaxing vacation.  I’m back two days and stumble and fall down stairs, spraining and banging things up and down.  While I was standing (leaning) catching my breath, grimacing and saying things under my breath, my young friend Roopa came up and asked, “How was your trip?”

Such is the irony of life.  I couldn’t help but laugh at Roopa’s perfectly timed straight line.  But it hurt to even laugh.  Thinking about it later (with my foot elevated and iced) I wonder how often I had done the same thing.   Passing the time with seemingly thoughtful questions to people who were hurting.  Roopa’s a kid, she didn’t see me fall, she didn’t notice I was in pain, or she would have offered to help.

As I meet people every day who have taken a tumble in life, I need to be more aware.

Sunday’s, when I am around a lot people, my conversations are mostly limited to, “Howyadoin?”   But that is the day I really aught to slow down and wait for the answer.  If I believe I have the answer-actually I know the answer personally- shouln’t I care a bit more how people are really feeling?  I stumbled down the stairs; people are taking bigger falls than that, and I need to pay more attention.

I might not be there when someone falls, so I can’t help them up.  But I can still offer a shoulder to lean on, if I only take the time to listen.

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