I've had a rough couple of weeks for reasons that aren't of particular interest but I've richocheted through the full range of emotions with my personal least favourite being self pity and general patheticness (and I'm sure that's actually not a word). I've acted like a victim. This has not been my finest hour.
On Friday, after a trip to the shops, the boys and I headed home, late afternoon in a massive rain storm. I came to a stop behind a car at a roundabout, where there seemed to be some sort of hold up. Through the rain and the windscreen wipers I could see a large man in a wheelchair had got stuck in the gutter by the footpath with his caregiver desperately trying to unwedge him. A couple of impatient tradesmen-looking cars drove over the roundabout and past him - WTF? Seriously?
The car in front of me pulled over, as did I and the woman and I ran over to help. The brakes on the guys wheelchair had got jammed, he was trying to tell his foreign looking caregiver what to do. He was soaked, half out of his chair and on the verge of completely tipping over. He looked like he had just been heading to the corner store. I scrambled with the wheels and unstuck them, "I just want to go home" he said. We pushed him back up the hill towards his street. It was pouring and extremely hard going. Cars kept driving past us, spraying him and us as they drove by. And no, we weren't sorted. 3 women, a large man, a jammed wheelchair and a steep hill is not something you should drive past. We had only a tenuous hold on him. A man stopped, we got control. At some point the poor guy asked if we could put his (sodden) leg back in the wheelchair. It was dragging in the wheels. We pushed him up to his house. His afternoon trip was over.
So why this story?
I got back in my car, my kids were warm, dry, happily eating their sushi and listening to music. I drove home to my warm lovely home, with my full health, my family, my life.
This isn't supposed to be a story about pity and feeling sorry for this guy.
This isn't a story about how a light suddenly came on in my head and all my troubles and misery instantly disappeared. Because that didn't happen.
This isn't a story about what a good thing I did, because I didn't, I just did what each and every one of you reading this would have done (unless of course you're an impatient tradesman at 4.30pm on Friday afternoon).
But what this is about, is a gift of perspective. And of perfect timing for this.