May 18, 2020

Who Would You Salute?


There has been a lot written about the extraordinary efforts and scary working conditions of the health care workers, doctors, nurses, and hospital staff. We have a new awareness of the importance of the people who keep the grocery stores stocked, the truck drivers, delivery services, and drive-through folks who give us a break from two months of home cooking.

I imagine most of us have someone, or a group of people, who we want to thank during this unusual time in our lives. It may be the fellow who still shows up every Monday morning to take away your trash. It could be the mailman who still makes her rounds. Maybe you have a neighbor who regularly checks on you and offers to go shopping for you. It could even be a spouse or partner who isn't driving you crazy during total together time.

It could be neighbors who say hello and offers a smile each morning while you are walking your dog. Maybe a group from your church stays in touch or offers to take you to a doctor. How about the barber or hair salon that just reopened and cut your hair that was as long as you wore it in 1973? The vet that takes care of your puppy or cat.

So, here is a simple opportunity to express thanks to someone in your life who has made this virus experience a little less stressful, someone (or maybe some place) that deserves a public pat on the back. 


22 comments:

  1. Lovely and thoughtful idea, Bob! I'd like to thank the many volunteers who have stayed with a job they're not paid to do, like the volunteer firefighters in rural and suburban communities and the dedicated people who staff regional food banks and small local food pantries. These positions are critical to many towns across the country, food pantries even more so than usual during this pandemic. I drove past our local pantry last week and the parking lot was just jammed. Blessings to both these volunteers and the people they serve.

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    1. With the economic situation in such a funk, the food banks are even more than important to help families with limited resources. You have identified an excellent group of people to salute: all the volunteers everywhere who continue to serve in a time of increased risks.

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  2. I'm grateful every day for the staff at the lodge where my mom lives. The lodge staff is working under pandemic guidelines to insure the safety of the residents. It's a huge responsibility and they do it with a smile on their faces behind their masks. They're fulfilling the job requirements as well as providing socialization and emotional support. There doesn't seem to be anyone there who left their heart at home.

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    1. After reading so many stories about adult facilities and their residents that have suffered so severely from the virus, it is nice to have another story to tell. Those who work at assisted living and nursing care centers are dedicated and brave. Thanks, Mona, for a ray of sunshine.

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  3. I'm grateful for the Volunteer Coordinators with the hospice I work with. They are working hard to keep our patients connected with phone calls, weekly notes of encouragement, and even Mothers' Day gifts for those whose families live away from them and can't visit now. It's a really lovely group and I'm happy to be working with them.

    Also, I have a spiritual director who gathers a group of us on Zoom on Saturday mornings for a meditation session followed by an informal chat so we can all encourage each other and share how our live are going.

    Finally, I'm grateful to the woman in my Al Anon group who has access to extended Zoom because she is a teacher. We have been able to transfer our weekly group online with very little trouble, and it is beyond heartening to connect with these people and see their familiar faces. Very uplifting.

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    1. Zoom, and its counterparts, have been lifesavers during the pandemic. While nothing can replace face-to-face, virtual meetings and gatherings are providing a tremendously valuable service.

      Thank you for your special identification of hospice workers and volunteers. In addition to the normal pressures of such a setting, the lockdown has created even more heartbreak for those who can't see their loved ones in person. Having someone who takes extra care to maintain contact is a real blessing.

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  4. Health care workers are the easy answer, off course, but I'm also very thankful for the postal system and my mail person. Since the stay-at-home orders went into effect I've been having them pick up 12-15 packages a week instead of me taking them into the post office. (e-Bay sales) I really miss talking to the women at my post office but I'm grateful the post office has such an efficient system in place that allows me to print labels at home and schedule pickups that also send me an email conformation after the task is completed.

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    1. As you are probably aware, the postal service is losing money at a tremendous rate. Officials predict they could run out of money by early fall. I will have a post about the importance of this necessary part of our lives coming soon.

      in the meantime, I echo your sentiments. The U.S. Postal service provides service that must continue. They are there every day, doing their job.

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    2. Looking forward to that post. Hope you cover the unrealistic funding of their pensions that caused their shortfalls in the first place and were designed to make them fail so they can be privatized.

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  5. I am very grateful for my instacart shoppers who provide me with my groceries and allow me to stay out of the big stores. I love to meal plan, cook and eat and this allows us some pleasure during a time when most of our social activities are kaput. I also have a thank you for the neighborhood school, which is still providing meals for children, who would ordinarily get those meals during the school day.They are keeping families fed. And, of course, our health care providers.I have friends and family working in hospitals,who are having to reuse their masks , gowns and PPE.. it is something I NEVER considered I would have to do,when I was a Nurse. Where is our equipment???? They go to work anyway., to be there for our citizens. And a shout out and salute to my patient husband who is handling the shut down very well and even works hard to keep me on an even keel on the days I am moody and sad. We shall all get through this together.

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    1. I wasn't aware schools were still providing free lunches. That is an important social service. I'm glad it is continuing.

      Let Ken know I perform the same service for my wife when she is feeling overwhelmed by all the bad news. And, yes, we will get through all this at some point, and probably in a way we least expect.

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  6. I would like to thank my brother. At 69 he and his wife were semi retired. Both of his children were well employed when the bottom fell out. One of his moved a trailer on his urban property, and moved in a family of four. The other is depending on a side hustle to cover the mins. for a family of five - with the hope that things will open SOON.
    I'd like to thank my ten nephews and nieces who are bravely losing income of $5-10,000 a month as movers and shakers so they could help the curve or wait for a cure or whatever. Their jobs were significant- but in the people industries.
    We chose to retire in our late fifties. We had made our good money and saved a lot. They were just in the middle of "climb the ladder". I cannot imagine losing our income, for no fault of our own, after choosing to wait to marry and have children so careers could be secure. The sacrifice is amazing.
    I'd like to thank all of those at the same age forced to work at home. The office was a place where we easily bounce good or bad ideas. We form a community. In turn, we are better at our job. They've lost that feel. The lack of stimulation is killing their creativity. They also took on, what our society has long held is bad for children, homeschooling.
    I'd like to thank my husband LDS church. They found ways of making tiny communities and continuing to visit the sick, feed the poor, work with the homeless and bring comfort to children and homebound. they certainly understand what it means to be "church".
    Last, I'd like to thank my daughter's friend. She was willing to be arrested to get her business going again. She was only closed, entirely, for a month. This forty year old had always been a saver. She paid her ten employees out of the family savings, because every one of her people needed the money. She negotiated her rent on the building. And now, she builds again. Thank you to her and people like her for moving forward.

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    1. You have done a beautiful job of fulfilling the intent of this post: public recognition of those who normally go unrecognized for their love of family and providing whatever support is possible.

      If you haven't discovered it yet, I urge you to watch the YouTube video series by actor John Krasinski (and wife Emily Blunt and kids). He has done eight, 15 minute episodes of what is called the SGN (Some Good News) Network. It is nothing but heartwarming stories and salutes to the very normal folks who have gone out of their way to lighten someone else's load. Watching an episode is an instant shot of hope, smiles, and even tears.

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  7. I would thank the several people who quickly checked on me after the shutdown started. It was nice to know that someone thought of me. And my daughters who frequently check to see how I am and offer to go to the store for me or do other errands.

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    1. So many people care about you! I'm happy you are content and well.

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  8. When looking over the current landscape, I see many fearful or angry or judgmental people (some embodying all three), often looking for someone to blame for one challenge or another ("whose fault is this?").... and then I see others who remain calm, reflective and compassionate. Their common question seems to most often be: "how can I help?" I would salute all of these everyday folks that work without recognition among us to help solve problems, big and small.

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    1. You are right. I have heard "How can I help?" more in the last few months than at any time in recent memory. There are some who will be angry and judgemental no matter what. I believe the majority are much more the type to ask that question.

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  9. I want to thank the man who comes with his fruit/vegetable truck 6 days a week. Even when most of the stores were closed he still kept coming. Because of him we had access to lots of fresh fruits and vegetables during this whole ordeal. And at very reasonable prices. He could have charged whatever he wanted -there really wasn't anyplace nearby to go.

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    1. Isn't that a great example of helping your fellow man. Not a lot of us live in the type of neighborhood where something like that can occur. I envy your ability to obtain such fresh fruits and veggies on a regular basis. A salute to your produce guy.

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  10. My salutes are very personal. Both Brett and I are so grateful and feel very blessed for the many people here who have helped us get through our sudden move back to Kaua'i. It's been an almost monumental task getting ourselves resettled, but we've been given help when we needed it most and are almost there: we found a great apartment in a great location; stores opened and allowed us to shop privately for necessary furniture; items we ordered have been delivered on time and even early (thank you USPS, Amazon and UPS!); grocery stores have remained opened and take out from some of our favorite places have as well; we've been able to purchase fresh local produce from farm stands and (more recently) farmers' markets; friends gave us dishes, sold our former car back to us at a great price, and helped us get our furniture into the apartment; and we were able to purchase many items necessary for us to move into our apartment (linens, towels, basic cookware, all which looked very much like non-essential items). These have all been small acts, but in our case ones that made a huge difference for us, and because of the aloha we've received we're off to a good start here again in Hawaii. Most of all, we're grateful that Kaua'i residents have seriously taken the orders to wear masks, maintain social distance, and stay at home, without complaint. Aloha is real.

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    1. Stories like this are why I love the islands. The feelings of Ohana (family) and taking care of each other are very much alive.

      This wasn't what you and Brett thought 2020 would look like, but the loving people of Kauai have helped take away some of the disappointment.

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