Post by Taralee Hurff for the Kind Kindred series.

illustration courtesy of johnhain on Pixabay

People who know
how to brighten a day
with heartwarming smiles
and with kind words they say,
people who know
how to willing share,
who know how to give
and who know how to care,
who know how to let
all their
warm feelings show…
are people that others feel lucky to know.

Poem By: Pamela Mould**

Our lives are filled with people. There are people who make up our families, where we work, our communities, our schools and our neighborhoods. Some people we interact with every day, some once a week and others a few times a year. Many people you may never even realize are a part of your life or that they may impact your life. Do you ever think about the people you throw a polite “hello” to as you walk around your block or the mailman that kindly brings your package to the door? What about the bank teller at the drive thru window or the person who picks up your trash? Regardless of who the people in your life are, people are a part of every aspect of your life whether you choose to pay attention or not.

Every person plays a role. People offer us things like friendship, support, a service, direction and even a place to belong. People will irritate, aggravate and infuriate you. You will have some people who remain in your life forever and others you may only be around for a short while. The thing that they all have in common – they are there for a reason. You will learn something about life or yourself (or both) from each and every one of them. The question is will you notice?

Now that you are thinking of all the people that impact your life, I want you to think about the people that you don’t feel impacted by. Maybe you forget they are even a part of your world until you actually see them or acknowledge them on that walk around your block…then they are gone again, out of your mind, until you offer that polite wave as you pass them on your way to work one day. Hold the thought of that person and now in this next moment – the world shifts. Nothing for that person will ever be the same and this seemingly insignificant person in your life now becomes a major player. You have abruptly been called upon by a higher power to help, to serve, to step up for someone who cannot do it alone. This “nobody” becomes now an important “somebody.” They need YOU. You get no warning. Without any hesitation you step up. You take the calling head on without asking why, how, what if or what next.

You become the ONLY person this person has left…before they even know…when they think they now have no one.

His son died unexpectedly of a heart attack while stopped at a red light on his way into work. The police were across the street and you went over to check on your neighbor, only to find out that he was scared to open the door and the police were there to deliver this tragic news. He needed YOU. You were put where someone else needed a person, a person like the poem above describes.

I feel lucky to know the person that stepped up for their neighbor. I am even luckier that she is my mother. My mother had no intention that day other than to check on her elderly neighbor. Never could she have foreseen the addition of a new family member, finding an unexpected friendship or showing so many that no matter the circumstances no one deserves to be alone. She has shown a level of sacrifice, compassion, sympathy, empathy, and giving that I know not many would ever be willing to give to a seemingly insignificant player in their game of life. She did all of this with an open heart, warm smiles, and kind words. It was a natural act of caring for another human being. She is someone I know her neighbor feels lucky to know.

The neighbors name is George and he is 90 years old. He has become a part of our family. My children consider him another great-grandparent. He has taught us all so much about history, things we could never learn from a textbook. He is a World War II veteran. He loves animals. He has a wood shop and loves to build all kinds of things. His son collected Hess Trucks and Matchbox cars – he still has them all. He has so many stories and every one of us loves to listen to them. My only wish is that we would have noticed George sooner.

Take the time to notice the people in your life. Be present in your moments with them. Know their names and something about them that is more than just their label of where they fit in your world. Strive to be the person the poem describes. You never know the impact you will have on someone or that they may have on you.

At the end of the day – people need people. Be a person people will feel lucky to know.

**The author of the poem was a dear friend of mine, taken much too early from our Earth in 2007.

Taralee received a dual Bachelor’s Degree in Clinical/Counseling Psychology and Criminal Justice from Moravian College. She received her Special Education Teacher certification from DeSales University. Taralee is a NJ certified Teacher of the Handicapped, and has been working in the home and school settings for over 15 years. Taralee is currently President of the Board of Trustees for the Southern Regional New Jersey Early Intervention Collaborative, she is serving in her fourth year as a Board member. 
Taralee’s most important job is raising her three creative and inquisitive children (ages 9, 7, and 4) in Southern NJ. 
Taralee’s book “100 Things To Do Before You Are 10” was published in April 2014. 
Please visit her Facebook page or send an e-mail for ordering information.


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