Quality of Life
A subscription-only magazine, The Week, provides this week’s good news:
Bill Waldschmidt used to work on classic cars, but now he’s fixing a different mode of transportation. The retired Minnesota engineer contracted polio at age 4 and spent most of his childhood on crutches. He regained enough strength to walk as an adult, but 10 years ago, post-polio syndrome put him in a wheelchair.
With a new sense of purpose, he removed the vintage cars from his garage and began buying and refurbishing power wheelchairs, which he then gifts to people who can’t afford them. “He’s the kindest man on the planet,” said Don Johnson, a disabled Vietnam vet, and owner of Waldschmidt’s chairs.
Thank you, Bill, for contributing so much to so many!
Sometimes statements or concepts I hear repeatedly over the years suddenly come to mean something new to me and when they do, wow! My life is set on edge, but in a good way.
I was listening to a podcast the other day focused on the concept of stress and anxiety in the workplace and in our private lives. The statement, “We oftentimes declare time to be our enemy when we have so very much to do and so little time in which to do it” came up and suddenly, a new perspective about time settled within my thoughts and within my heart, which made me boldly declare out loud:
Time is my very good friend, because I still have time.
That was it – very simple – but I know the reason for that revelation came about because as of January 24, 2019, my extraordinary sister-in-law, Wendy, no longer had time at her disposal. I know Wendy wanted more time to spend with her husband, three adult children, her sisters and brothers, her good friend Gary who also happened to be her boss, and so many other people she cherished, and who cherished her. But through no fault of her own, decades of life were stolen from her by the ugly injustice of cancer.
I cared for my sister-in-law greatly. I choose to honor her by respecting the time with which I have been gifted, just as Wendy so beautifully spent the time given her.
Won’t you do the same?
The first Good News Story of March is something I personally witnessed. The greater Seattle area of Washington State experienced a Snowmageddon of sorts the beginning of February resulting in many places, including my neighborhood, receiving two feet or more of snow. One thing we’ve learned living in this neighborhood is that if even 1/4 of an inch of snow falls, our Waste Management service ceases, so much so that we just went three entire weeks without garbage and recycling service because the company’s policy is to protect their drivers from snow and ice incidents in their vehicles.
I get that, but those super heavy vehicles were no match for the rinky dinky mail carrier truck that made it to our mailbox every day of Snowmageddon, not missing a day of mail delivery service. I witnessed our mail carrier (a slightly older gentleman) climb over snow berms in front of neighborhood mailboxes and I also saw him park his truck at a cul-de-sac he couldn’t drive into, haul the mail for those mailboxes on that closed off street, and deliver each and every piece of mail to those residents.
Good News delivered by a dedicated postal carrier. Isn’t that grand?
Last week’s good news focused on a child’s kind efforts towards vulnerable adults; this week’s news features how an adult in Lafayette, Indiana was able to lighten a young child’s bad day.
A young boy got home from school – it’s not clear whether anyone was at home with him at the time – but he had experienced a bad day at school so he called someone who could help: a 911 dispatcher. This brief article – and the even briefer audio of the call – clearly shows how a little kindness can make the difference in a person’s day. I’m glad the dispatcher chose to help, rather than reprimand, this boy who wasn’t in an emergency situation but needed support nonetheless. Enjoy.