Recently, I was in a doctor’s office getting (another) COVID test (results were negative, yea!). As I sat in the lobby, a much older gentleman than I emerged from the exam rooms. He had a walker and moved rather slowly. He was by himself.
As he passed the reception desk, I noticed he paused and struck up a conversation with the three receptionists. They really weren’t doing much anyways, so they all sat together and chatted with him. You could see him light up as they paid attention to him. He smiled, talked and laughed a bit with these gals. Their conversation went on for several minutes.
My heart went out to him. Here he is, by himself, probably in his mid- to late-eighties at the doctor’s office. He appeared to me to be lonely. Very lonely. But for a few brief minutes, his loneliness seemed to go away. These gals were giving him the gift of conversation. They were noticing him. And he was having a better day because of their attention. You know, no matter how old we are, we still want someone to notice us – to pay attention to us – to love us.
These caring receptionists paid attention to him. They brightened his day by listening to him. I was grateful for their care and compassion they expressed to him through their simple act of kindness.
For many of us, Thanksgiving marks one of the few times all year when we can get together with our families to share a delicious meal, give thanks to God for what we have, and be with people we love.
But this year will be different. Because of the pandemic, we’re being asked to limit those with whom we share the holiday. Some of our traditions may be changed or skipped altogether. Turkey Day will still have football and food, but otherwise, the day might be a bit empty because we’ll likely miss seeing some family and friends we love. It will be especially difficult for those who live alone or who would like to be with us, but can’t due to the pandemic. When you can’t be with those you love, holidays become difficult. This pandemic has further isolated us.
As you look toward this holiday season, remember to keep in mind those who might be lonely. Take time to call them. See if you can ensure they have a Thanksgiving meal to enjoy. Perhaps Facetime with them during your meal so you can eat together. I know that’s a bit odd, but then again, we’re living in odd times.
So, reach out to someone else and give them the gift of your attention and conversation. They will be grateful to you for taking the time to notice them. And you will find yourself being more thankful too, for the friends, family and fortune you already have.
Bill English, CEO
Accurate Home Care