Sometimes Tears Just Come

There are many good people doing unselfish things all the time. Their day is not occupied with imposing their unwanted advice on others. They accept others where they are and go to help if possible and if the help is wanted. Stories of these caregivers are prevalent on the TV news lately as the Covid-19 pandemonium rages on.

The stories are numerous and I find tears in my eyes as I listen to them. The God of love dwells in these people. The God of love dwells in us all if we let Him.

This morning there was a story about a football player working in a long term care facility. He plays football for the Kansas City team that recently won the Superbowl. Notoriety of that achievement is certainly why the story made the CBS news this Saturday morning but the story is an excellent one about a young man that has found a calling greater that himself.

During his time as a player for KC, he was able to complete his studies to become a doctor. Sitting at home, his post-superbowl vacation cut short by a world pandemic, he looked for ways to help. He consulted with his team and coach whose wife happened to be a graduate of the same medical school he attended in the off season while playing for KC. Although he has not been able to do a residency and therefore cannot work in a hospital, he has found a position as a nurse/doctor/aide/janitor (his term) at a long term care facility in Montreal were he lives. He spoke about his caring for the patients in the facility and its humbling affect on his day to day experience.

Tears came to my eyes as I realized how his heart had overridden his passion for football and he struggled to keep his young family safe and healthy while providing care for the people in long term care. Truly love is in his heart. He will sit out the 2020 season to provide help and care to those in need.

In another short piece, a restaurateur is running a food pantry for his neighborhood in New York. There have been many of these. I do not work in the restaurant business and never did but my old company made kitchen equipment and although I have never cooked commercially, those who do have a passion that oozes into their conversation and it is hard to ignore. The complicated activity of getting a new small restaurant up and running is brought to a screeching halt by health concerns of the pandemic.

It seems that many small trendy restaurants in NY have converted themselves into a form of food pantry and, now that the social scene is carefully opening in that state, a food pantry / socially distanced restaurant. Their clientele are supporting that love of community.

Closer to home, my daughter is a teacher doing her best entertain and teach science to her students this new school year in Wilmington, OH. Teachers are a dedicated bunch that give of themselves to their students without questions about what will come from the pandemonium. Schools can be pandemonium without any input from a pandemic.

Late in life I pursued a change in career into teaching. It is very hard work. Hard in the sense that if you taught math and science as I did, you ponder why is that easy for me and why do the students not get it? A lot of time spent in self analysis and then chasing different clever ways of lighting a passion in your students for your subject consume many off hours.

Many teachers are very good at creating interest and even passion in their students. We have all had one or two special ones in our lives. Truly love is in their hearts when they are helping the kiddos and adults to learn and grow.

Just simply wearing a mask to protect others shows love in one’s heart. As the pandemic appears to have no end in sight the medical folks have come to the belief that for now slowing the spread of the virus in our open society is up to us. Through the noise of politics, the message is coming clearer, wearing a mask indoors in public spaces is not a perfect solution but does affect the spread of virus particles.

Initially it became a political football and somehow became associated with anti-patriotism. Puzzling to many. A pariah to others who are certain their rights are being violated. Most people wear clothing in public. Love is in the heart of those wearing a mask without complaint and those who wear one with complaint.

Advocating for loved ones in hospital is difficult without a pandemic. New protocols within hospitals that are coping as best they can have inhibited patient’s families from gaining access and advocating for their loved one. In these difficult times the avocation is physically distanced over a phone line. Love is in the heart of those who accept the reality that doctors and nurses in hospital facilities are doing their best to keep families informed of progress or not of their loved ones.

It is a tragic even when someone passes from the onslaught of this previously unknown virus. Perhaps we as a society could have responded better than we have. Perhaps not. We all can find love in our hearts to be with those who are suffering and with those who help them through the physical suffering.

My sister-in-law is caring for small children so parents can work. She has done this throughout her life. First with her own children and friends children and then grandchildren, nieces and nephews, her love in her heart for these little ones shines brightly.

It is a calling and a ministry. She would probably not view it this way but that is how I view it from afar. She has love for the children and it shows.

I spend much of my day giving comfort and care to the Parkinson’s sufferer that lives with me. Cheryl’s disease progressed very slowly for a decade or so. Lately the changes are still small and subtle but somehow more intense.

She feels an anxiety about losing touch with friends and family as her brain feels the effects of Lewy bodies. Her sister is in hospital in Florida suffering from the Covid-19 virus. Her sister who shares her PD and other complications of myasthenia gravis along with diabetes has complications that require use of a ventilator. The whole family is worried. Cheryl recently started talking to her sister Jan at night. Cheryl occasionally sees her sister Jan here with us fleetingly and she asks me where did she go?

As children they were close. Close in age. Close in that they shared the same double bed for years. Close now because she is worried about her health.

Last year Cheryl pursued in a big way the Sunflower Rev It Up for Parkinson’s fundraising event. Jan came to town to walk with her and be a part of the event. As sisters they are close and yet over the years, distance and time has separated them somewhat as happens in families. Now it seems she feels her love in her heart for her sister more somehow.

Love is all around us. Take the time to feel it.

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