In one of the many notebooks that hold my CaringOn ideas, business plans, sketches, thoughts, and lists, I came across one of many quotes that caught my attention.The quote is from writer, Leo Buscaglia:
“Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around.”
Mr. Buscaglia’s statement made me think of CaringOn and how CaringOn has (and hopefully will continue too) in a small way, made a difference in so many people’s lives. You see on a very hot day in August 2012, I was still processing the doctors’ and specialists’ diagnosis as well as trying to figure out what to do with myself and make the best of the time I had left. Many times I wanted to just stay in my house, in my room with the lights dimmed, loose myself in stupid tv, medicine and sleep. But, luckily for me, my husband, kids and close friends wouldn’t let me relish in my misery and pointed out that I need to get up and that I owe it to myself to get outside and do something! Do anything they said.
So, I did. I decided to not let my “cancer” have all the control. It was time for me to be in control of how I decided to use my time and energy. I started to really pay attention to who was really listening when I answered their questions and who just kept on moving or picked up their phone to send a “quick text”. I began to take the time to see how or what someone said when they payed me an honest compliment such as “Oh, you look so great today!” yet their nose had been in their laptop during the entire quick 2 minute conversation. The actions I saw reminded me that I wanted to spend my time with people that really saw me, and who understood how to be in the moment, not just use the moment so they could to check off another item on their list. Deep down, I choose to believe that the majority of people in this world want to show and give kindness, compassion, and caring to others. But as we get older, our lists become longer and our days shorter and we become more guarded, it is not as easy to give to others in the way Leo Buscaglia mentions. Yet time and time again, CaringOn gives a gift to a Caregiver, a small act of caring and appreciation, for all that the Caregiver does, and the reaction we receive would make you think we just gave them Oprah Winfrey’s & Donald Trump’s bank accounts! $$
The Caregiver’s response is so genuine and most of the time so surprised that their loved one or someone close to them took the time to notice what they do 24 hours a day to make their cancer stricken loved one make it another day. There really is no gesture to small: a hug, a warm smile, or a listening ear, to show how the power of caring gives one strength to caringon, to stay positive and to be excited and optimistic about tomorrow.