Mastering the Art of Kindness (Part III)

Hey Friends & Future Friends!

I hope everyone is having a great week so far and that kindness is just flowing through you! I’m a day late due to not having internet at home yesterday, but I’m back at it today with a quick story to tip off this week’s Kindness Challenge. This week I’ll tell you about Dr. M.

On Thursday, December 22, 2016, I went to my post-op appointment under the assumption that my stitches would be looked at and I’d be sent home. I took my lunch break to head over to Dr. M’s office, which is only a ten minute drive from my office. I had no idea I would walk into his office and learn that I’d been diagnosed with Stage 1 Classic Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. Dr. M gave me the news and I’m so glad he did.

Dr. M took out his cell phone and asked me not to leave until he got my oncologist on the line. He left my in the room for a while and then rushed back in when he had her on the line. She was only able to speak to me for a few minutes because she was in court and stepped out to take his umpteenth call. After we talked, Dr. M stayed with me for a while. He took off his doctor hat and just talked to me.

If you’re wondering where the act of kindness is, wonder no more. Have you ever met a doctor who gave you news and then said some sort of an acknowledgement, excused his/herself and then bowed out of the conversation? I have met a few doctors like that. I’ve also met a few people who have had to undergo similar processes with their own health and meet really impersonal, uninterested, impatient, intolerant people. Dr. M is not any of that. He literally stopped his day so that he could help me navigate my day as it got a little harder. He has secretaries and nurses he could have brought into the room I was in to sit with me or console me. He closed the door and just sat with me after having spent an hour with me explaining the diagnosis and trying to get my oncologist on the line. My lunch break was about two hours long that day and on the way back, I cried a little, but I was so grateful that I had experienced genuine kindness from someone who didn’t have to be that kind.

My challenge to you is to give someone else a little more of your time. You may be in a rush to do the next thing on your task list, but someone else may need what only you have to offer…your time, your ears, your heart.

Have a great week, everyone! Make sure to look for opportunities to be kind! Please also share your experiences in a comment on this post! Let me know how you impacted the world! God bless you! -E

10 thoughts on “Mastering the Art of Kindness (Part III)

  1. Thank you for sharing this Erika! I’ve been following all you’ve been doing for a while but never took the time to comment. I just want to say your happiness is contagious. I hope all is well. Hope you’re ok! And many blessings on this movement. xx

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  2. It’s easy to just stare down at my phone, or speed walk to my next commitment. But this is a nice reminder to pull myself out of the demands of my chaotic world to show kindness when none is expected. Praying for your speedy recovery!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Saira, for your love and for your heart. You and Francisco are in my prayers, as well. God bless you 🙂 maybe see you next week 😉

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  3. Oh wow! I am touched by this as it has happened to me once years ago. I was 21 at the time and dealing with a disease that no one could seem to correctly diagnose. After 9 months, multiple incorrect test and diagnoses I had gained 63 lbs, was in depression meds, sleeping meds, 4 other types of drugs I forget now and a boat load of creams to attempt to soothe the then quarter sized severely itchy spots that scattered my body. The dermatologist sat down with me and inquired about more than my skin. He wanted to know why a 21 yr old was getting what most people never knew they had till their mid 30-40s. I was diagnosed with lichen planus pygmentosis and as soon as he left the room, his nurse said to me, “I have been working with him for years and this is the very first time I’ve seen him pull out a chair and actually ask what’s going on with a patients life.” At the time the disease had little to be known and other that knowing it would never be cured, I would just have to control it. Time and experimentation has taught me a lot but it’s this past week I found out that all these years, NSAIDS were also causing the never ending breakouts that I was trying so hard to prevent. Of all times, now…when I need anti-inflamatories to help when my knee flares up.
    I feel your frustration in a million ways. I no longer have anything but Tylenol to take for migraines. Must stop drinking any alcohol at all because it flares the outbreaks up more and need to control my pain in other ways or start taking Opiods. As a nurse, I don’t want to start them no how.
    These situations are depressing, daunting and so easily try to consume our happiness. Stay strong, reach out to me if you ever need to talk or even get a Nurses opinion. I’m extending this to you, for anything you might need. Yes this may be consisidered my act of kindness but it’s more so a sincere offer of care and willingness to share anything that I may know or have to help you.
    I’ll keep you in my prayers for sure. We are stronger than life and anything that may attempt to knock us down. There is nothing we cannot handle. We have God on our side.
    👊🏻😊👌🏼🙏🏼

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    1. I love this. Thank you for sharing and for loving me! Ah! I’m so blessed. Big hug when I see you 🙂

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  4. This was a touching story.

    As I’ve followed your blog lately and your initiative for the Kindness Challenge, it stirred up a thought I had. At the start of the challenge, I thought this would easy peasy. Given that I have a career based in philanthropy, I share kindness every day! Or so, I thought. The more time passed, the more I realized there is a difference between being “nice” and being “kind.” You can be nice to anyone with a smile or a greeting. But kindness is a lot more than that, and something we really do need to make an extra effort towards.

    It’s been an eye opening journey, but for me, my first act of kindness came now, in week 3 of the challenge. I was at a gala this week for work where I had the opportunity to introduce myself to our new Chairman and CEO. In preparation for this introduction, I knew he would ask me what my “one wish” was, and I had my top two in mind, both of which were things my boss and I had agreed upon. At this gala, I found the right moment to approach him and was well received. I started to talk about my first wish, and things then transitioned to the next. The second item on the wishlist involved the support of a VP within our company, who would happen to walk into the room 15 seconds after I began to talk about what I/we wanted, and why felt it was important. Our new CEO called her over into the conversation, and without so much as a hello, went off into expressing my group’s need for ABC and XYZ. I had NO Idea this would happen, and the look on her face said this must have triggered a hot button with her. Sure enough, my boss, who was on the right of me, nudged my hand to signal to go easy. However, there was no stopping what was coming out of our CEO at the time, who stood on my left, asking why would implementation of the changes we wanted would take almost a year… that it was unreasonable, and he wanted to something happen for us within 3 months… not to accept a November/December timeline. So there I was, with the most powerful decision maker of my company standing to my left, facing this woman who I would later learn was handed a huge mess when she came on-board and had had enough of people making demands for instant changes that really required time. She was doing her best to sort through it all, but things were in transition and certainly not easy. I felt absolutely terrible that one of her first encounters with our new Chairman and CEO would be like this, and it created a very uncomfortable situation that didn’t sit well with me during the dinner. I knew what I had to do- I had to apologize to her. I easily could have let it go and left without saying a word, but that wouldn’t be kind. She clearly felt ambushed and it was indirectly my fault. So as the night ended, I approached her and expressed my apologies. I could tell she felt like what happened was not cool at all. I walked her through the events that led up to that moment and told her I didn’t want her to feel like it was all of us standing against her, because that’s what it looked and felt like. My boss and I were on HER side, and she needed to know that we respected her. It was really about respect. She is in a higher position than I am, and I didn’t want her to feel like any of us were stepping on her toes. She said she really appreciated my apology, and it confirmed it was the right thing to do. She was hurt by what happened in such a public forum. We walked back to our cars, letting it go, and I felt like it was that moment of kindness that made things OK.

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  5. Last week my family and I were on vacation. I made it a point to spend more fun quality time with the kids, outside of the everyday stresses of school and homework. I wanted to get to know them a little more and really develop a better relationship with them. It’s hard during the week when we are at home and our time and energy get taken away elsewhere. I can be like a big kid at heart and this week I let my playfulness come through. I made up this little game and the kids played along. They actually told me they had the most fun playing that little game then almost anything else up to that point (we had already done a bunch of other stuff like play golf and go to the arcade). This was a good reminder to just let go sometimes and enjoy the small and silly things.

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    1. This is great! I remember being a kid and feeling amazed when my parents did something fun. I’m sure they’ll keep those memories forever! Thanks for sharing, friend!

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  6. andyreita@gmail.com April 19, 2017 — 1:19 PM

    I forgot to leave my kindness challenge comment for this one. I guess I could say, since I love to have my itinerary writing down, and have even “eating time” written down on it, sometimes I forget to appreciate the little things in life.
    Last weekend, I decided to go and watch coach Carrie compete at her weightlifting competition. While I was there, her husband stepped out, and I stayed with Carrie’s 8-yr old son… He was very shy, but I started talking to him, and making cute jokes…after Carrie was done, she was so happy I came to watch her, even though I was the one excited to be there, she was more than thankful because it means a lot when someone receives support in situations like those. When we were leaving, she tell her son to get in the car, and he proceeded, but then got out, and came and hugged me! It was one of the cutest and more sincere hugs I’ve received.
    When he got back into the car, she told me, he never gives hugs, and that he is really shy! I told her, we are now buddies! haha anyway… idk if this relates to your challenge, but I just wanted to share it! 😀 I love you! and I cant wait to keep making life with you!!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Andrea! Thank you for sharing! You certainly have a gift and I’m so happy you’re sharing it! Keep being YOU!!!!! YOU make a difference in all of our lives! 🙂

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