Thursday, October 8, 2015

The Joy of Sharing in Someone Else's Joy

The other day a woman wandered into my office. This is strange because I work in a construction yard in an old quarry where there are other construction yards. Not too many women frequent the area. She was looking for the landscape contractor across the street, but when she found out that we were landscape contractors too, she decided to pitch her spiel to me.

Turned out she was from the Welcome Wagon, and while I tried my best to get rid of her, she had pretty things to show me. The Welcome Wagon has come far since I had a visit 30 years ago from a little granny with a basket full of pens and yardsticks from the hardware store. 

At any rate, I invited her to sit at the table and she showed me more pretty things, including a website and a mobile app, and a boxelope (a large envelope-not quite a box) that gets sent to new families. 

She was looking on her phone for the rates to quote me for a certain area when she said, "Oh!" I thought, Wow, is it that high or that low?

"Oh, sorry," she explained. "My mother just texted me. My father hasn't walked since March. He broke his hip and his femur and he's had six surgeries and has been bedridden ever since. He was just transferred back to rehab last night and today he walked with a walker for the first time since March."

For the most part, we typically listen politely to someone's talk about ailments or problems, and even less politely when it's about their family or friends. We don't know those people.

All the while we're thinking about picking the kids up from school, the grocery list, making a hair appointment. We want to get on with our day. We don't have time or we don't want to take the time to really care, do we? We wish they'd hurry up and finish their lament so we can move on.

We get so caught up in our own lives, that to care about someone else's can be a burden, an unwelcome distraction in our otherwise very busy and very scheduled day.

But because I am in a joy-finding mode lately, I realized that this was an opportunity to share in a complete stranger's joy. And I did.

"I feel like I'm gonna cry," she continued. "You have to understand, my father was a very active man before he broke his hip. He rode motorcycles. And for him to be bedridden was so hard for him. This is such good news."

She filled up. So did I. I knew this woman for like 10 minutes. But she invited me into her joy moment, and I slipped quietly into her world for that moment. I just sat there and let her have her joy moment. And I looked her in the eye and said, "Wow, that's terrific."

It felt really good to share her joy. It felt good to care about someone besides me. I felt like I was going to cry along with her.

But being the professional that she was, she gathered her composure and moved on to quoting me rates.

I promised to pass all the information on to the boss (my son) and get back to her. But I haven't forgotten her joy moment because it became mine.

Whose joy can you share today? 

Be aware. Care. Share.

It's that easy.

Blessings Along the Path,

sharing this blog with some of these lovely bloggers and with Write 31 Days


  1. I have moments where I am so good at this and other moments where I am not! It usually depends on how hectic my day has been or is going. If I'm going, going, going, I tend not to stop enough to care, Great message in this post, thanks!!

    1. I hear you, Anastasia. That's why my series is called "Intentional" Joy. Sometimes joy, love and caring come naturally, especially if it's evident and spectacular. But there are many days when we feel anything but joy or love, and we are so busy that we don't want to stop to think about someone else. That's when it has to become intentional. Thanks for visiting!