Today, like many other people, I returned to work after the holidays, and knowing the paper work and grant reports that awaited me, I was determined to remain as calm, cool, and collected as I was while off of work. I armed myself with a good attitude, “stress relief” candle, and my favorite ginger and green teas and headed off to work. When I arrived at work exited my car, I was hit with a cold blast of arctic air, and when I entered the day shelter for homeless men, I was hit the harsh reality that my vacation truly had come to an end. I hadn’t even take my coat off, when I was informed that one of the men in our permanent supportive housing program had unexpectedly died over the weekend. As the tears fell and my heart broke, I realized that there weren’t enough candles or tea in the world to fix this, and I just wanted to retreat to my home. Then, I was given every reason to stay.
I composed myself and set about opening my mail, listening to messages, answering emails, and tackling a variety of other tasks, As I darted in and out of my office and made my way through the day shelter, I found myself being warmly greeted and welcomed back to work by the gentlemen in the day shelter. With each kind word and smile, I felt my mood begin to brighten, and my gratitude for their kindness on such a sad and hectic day was immense. With just a few kind words, they made me feel cared about and welcomed, and they reminded me why I feel so honored and privileged to work with the finest gentlemen in all of Louisville.
These special gentlemen reminded me the power and positive impact kind words can have on someone. As I continued to plow through my tasks, I was inspired by the gentlemen to slow down and take time to chat and dispense kind and genuine words of welcome and praise to the people who crossed my path. I noticed the smiles on their faces and heard their words of thanks, and I felt as happy to be kind to them as they were to be on the receiving end of my kindness. Today definitely left me feeling a bit weary, but because of the kindness extended to me, it did not leave me feeling defeated. Tomorrow, I will be back and give it my best once again.
Just one thing each day . . .