real life wisdom

another feel good story

by Kristina Sloggett

in real life wisdom

I have only shared something like this one other time, with varying degrees of response. I don’t care, those who get it, get it.

Those who don’t are not reading this sentence, so they won’t know that I don’t care if this is made up, that I did not verify accuracy via snopes, that I simply want to share a heartwarming story.

I liked it, I hope you do too:

A NYC Taxi driver wrote:

I arrived at the address and honked the horn. After waiting a few minutes I honked again. Since this was going to be my last ride of my shift I thought about just driving away, but instead I put the car in park and walked up to the door and knocked.. ‘Just a minute’, answered a frail, elderly voice. I could hear something being dragged across the floor.

After a long pause, the door opened. A small woman in her 90’s stood before me. She was wearing a print dress and a pillbox hat with a veil pinned on it, like somebody out of a 1940’s movie.

By her side was a small nylon suitcase. The apartment looked as if no one had lived in it for years. All the furniture was covered with sheets.

There were no clocks on the walls, no knickknacks or utensils on the counters. In the corner was a cardboard
box filled with photos and glassware.

‘Would you carry my bag out to the car?’ she said. I took the suitcase to the cab, then returned to assist the woman.

She took my arm and we walked slowly toward the curb.

She kept thanking me for my kindness. ‘It’s nothing’, I told her… ‘I just try to treat my passengers the way I would want my mother to be treated.’

‘Oh, you’re such a good boy, she said. When we got in the cab, she gave me an address and then asked, ‘Could you drive through downtown?’

‘It’s not the shortest way,’ I answered quickly…

‘Oh, I don’t mind,’ she said. ‘I’m in no hurry. I’m on my way to a hospice.’

I looked in the rear-view mirror. Her eyes were glistening. ‘I don’t have any family left,’ she continued in a soft voice…’ The doctor says I don’t have very long.’ I quietly reached over and shut off the meter.

‘What route would you like me to take?’ I asked.

For the next two hours, we drove through the city. She showed me the building where she had once worked as an elevator operator.

We drove through the neighborhood where she and her husband had lived when they were newlyweds. She had me pull up in front of a furniture warehouse that had once been a ballroom where she had gone dancing as a girl.

Sometimes she’d ask me to slow in front of a particular building or corner and would sit staring into the darkness, saying nothing.

As the first hint of sun was creasing the horizon, she suddenly said, ‘I’m tired.Let’s go now’.

We drove in silence to the address she had given me. It was a low building, a small convalescent home, with a driveway that passed under a portico.

Two orderlies came out to the cab as soon as we pulled up. They were solicitous and intent, watching her every move. They must have been expecting her.

I opened the trunk and took the small suitcase to the door. The woman was already seated in a wheelchair.

‘How much do I owe you?’ she asked, reaching into her purse.

‘Nothing,’ I said.

‘You have to make a living,’ she answered.

‘There are other passengers,’ I responded.

Almost without thinking, I bent and gave her a hug. She held onto me tightly.

‘You gave an old woman a little moment of joy,’ she said. ‘Thank you.’

I squeezed her hand, and then walked into the dim morning light. Behind me, a door shut. It was the sound of the closing of a life.

I didn’t pick up any more passengers that shift. I drove aimlessly lost in thought. For the rest of that day, I could hardly talk. What if that woman had gotten an angry driver, or one who was impatient to end his shift? What if I had refused to take the run, or had honked once, then driven away?

On a quick review, I don’t think that I have done anything more important in my life.

We’re conditioned to think that our lives revolve around great moments.

But great moments often catch us unaware – beautifully wrapped in what others may consider a small one.

________________________

… like my Grandpa Z always said – ‘you should always Stop and Smell the Roses…’

 

{ 61 comments }

rules of the day

by Kristina Sloggett

in real life wisdom

These are rules for my day today. and possibly my tomorrow.

rule # 1. when a bunch of bad things are happening? don’t ask “what else could possibly go wrong?”

Even if you do not actually ask that question, sometimes you get an answer anyway.

We spent Wednesday in the ER. Only this time it was for me. I am completely healthy, all tests came back fine, but for some reason my blood pressure was above 200 yesterday. With an incredibly bad headache, that scared me enough to go in. They saw me pretty quickly, as they all quickened their step when I told them my readings.

I am fine. I don’t show history of high blood pressure (tests can show long term high, I am good), everything else was fine. They asked if I had any abnormal stress lately. Hmm. They gave me an Rx for Chill Pills and orders to take it easy.

Mother Nature must have thought I may not listen, so she gave us several inches of snow! Message received, loud and clear.

rule #2. for today. relax. take a nap. read a book. go for a walk in the snow.

rule #3. tell the important people just how important they are.

rule #4. eat or drink your veggies.

snow day juice

serves two

8 carrots
5 handfuls spinach
1 inch piece ginger
1 orange
1 apple
3 tomatoes

Juice, pour into glasses, cool in the snow. Enjoy!

Cooled by the snow.

Chill out.

 

{ 82 comments }

fathers

by Kristina Sloggett

in real life wisdom

I have been meaning to share the view outside my dad’s hospital room.

Someone attached three super heros onto a string, and they fly right by the windows.

Super heros = people you look up to. People you want to emulate and celebrate.

My dad has been my hero these last several months. Going through some pretty tough surgeries, and now having a trach temporarily take his voice, he has been nothing but positive and strong. He always has a big smile for me, and like I shared before, always jokes with me and the nurses.

He is able to cough through his trach, and does it well. He was telling me the other day he scared a nurse, made her jump, because his cough was so loud.

This is how he told me:

I had to take a photo of that, because it makes me smile. I look at it often.

So many of you continue to ask about him and send positive thoughts, and I thank you for all of them. Your words mean more than you know. Dad is doing well, and is now at home. I have this nurse thing down to an imperfect science, and it’s a nice visit each morning when I show up. We had an oncologist appointment today – I really like his whole team of doctors – and he starts chemo treatment this Thursday. I will keep you updated – his plan goes several months.

Now I have sat here at my keyboard for the last several minutes, not knowing how to say what I have to say.

We lost Jason’s dad yesterday. It was completely unexpected and we are numb with shock and sadness. One day I may share more about Jason’s dad, and what an amazing person he was. I am so happy to have known him, he was another who was positive and funny and always put others before himself.

As they say back in Missouri, very Salt of the Earth.

The world lost a good one yesterday. A real life hero.

Bob, you impacted many. You are dearly missed, by many.

 

{ 59 comments }

a feel-good story.

by Kristina Sloggett

in real life wisdom

Happy Saturday! I hope everyone is enjoying a beautiful summer day like I am. I wanted to share a heart warming story my sister sent to me this week.

We don’t know this person, but snopes verified as true.

It is not known who replied, but there is a beautiful soul working in the dead letter office of the US postal service.


Our 14 year old dog, Abbey, died last month. The day after she died, my 4 year old daughter Meredith was crying and talking about how much she missed Abbey.. She asked if we could write a letter to God so that when Abbey got to heaven, God would recognize her. I told her that I thought we could so she dictated these words:

Dear God,

Will you please take care of my dog? She died yesterday and is with you in heaven. I miss her very much. I am happy that you let me have her as my dog even though she got sick.
I hope you will play with her.. She likes to play with balls and to swim. I am sending a picture of her so when you see her You will know that she is my dog. I really miss her.

Love, Meredith


We put the letter in an envelope with a picture of Abbey and Meredith and addressed it to God/Heaven. We put our return address on it.. Then Meredith pasted several stamps on the front of the envelope because she said it would take lots of stamps to get the letter all the way to heaven. That afternoon she dropped it into the letter box at the post office. A few days later, she asked if God had gotten the letter yet. I told her that I thought He had.

Yesterday, there was a package wrapped in gold paper on our front porch addressed, ‘To Meredith’ in an unfamiliar hand.. Meredith opened it. Inside was a book by Mr. Rogers called, ‘When a Pet Dies..’ Taped to the inside front cover was the letter we had written to God in its opened envelope. On the opposite page was the picture of Abbey & Meredith and this note:


Dear Meredith,
Abbey arrived safely in heaven.

Having the picture was a big help. I recognized Abbey right away.
Abbey isn’t sick anymore. Her spirit is here with me just like it stays in your heart. Abbey loved being your dog. Since we don’t need our bodies in heaven, I don’t have any pockets to keep your picture in, so I am sending it back to you in this little book for you to keep and have something to remember Abbey by…

Thank you for the beautiful letter and thank your mother for helping you write it and sending it to me. What a wonderful mother you have. I picked her especially for you. I send my blessings every day and remember that I love you very much. By the way, I’m easy to find, I am wherever there is love.

Love, God


{ 392 comments }

The Wooden Bowl

by Kristina Sloggett

in real life wisdom

It seems the universe was in line with yesterdays thoughts to Stop and Smell the Roses, as it snowed enough to keep us in most of the day. I enjoyed my tea in one of my favorite cups – reminds me of one of my favorite cities.

In honor of my ongoing Switch Your Focus started by my friend Lindsay, I thought I’d share an email my mom sent me today. It takes a minute to read, but it is something you’ll remember for a long time.

__________________________________________________________________________________________________

A frail old man went to live with his son, daughter-in-law and four-year-old grandson. The old man’s hands trembled, his eyesight was blurred, and his step faltered.

The family ate together at the table. But the elderly grandfather’s shaky hands andfailing sight made eating difficult. Peas rolled off his spoon onto the floor.When he grasped the glass, milk spilled on the tablecloth.

The son and daughter-in-law became irritated with the mess. “We must do something about father,” said the son. “I’ve had enough of his spilled milk, noisy eating and food on the floor.”

So the husband and wife set up a small table in the corner. There, Grandfather ate alone while the rest of the family enjoyed dinner. Since Grandfather had broken a dish or two, his food was served in a wooden bowl.

When the family glanced in the Grandfather’s direction, sometimes he had a tear in his eye as he sat alone. Still, the only words the couple had for him were sharp admonitions when he dropped a fork or spilled food.

The four-year-old watched it all in silence.

One evening before supper, the father noticed his son playing with wood scraps on the floor. He asked the child sweetly, “What are you making?” Just as sweetly, the boy responded, ‘Oh, I am making a little bowl for you and Mama to eat your food with when I grow up.’ The four-year-old smiled and went back to work.

The words so struck the parents so that they were speechless. Then tears started to stream down their cheeks. Though no word was spoken, both knew what must be done..

 

That evening the husband took Grandfather’s hand and gently led him back to the family table.

For the remainder of his days he ate every meal with the family… and for some reason, neither husband or wife seemed to care when a fork was dropped, milk spilled or the tablecloth soiled.

__________________________________________________

On a positive note, I’ve learned that, no matter what happens, how bad it seems today, life does go on and it will be better tomorrow.

I’ve learned that you can tell a lot about a person by the way he/she handles four things: a rainy day, the elderly, lost luggage and tangled Christmas tree lights.

I’ve learned that making a living is not the same as making a life.

I’ve learned that life sometimes gives you a second chance.

 

I’ve learned that you shouldn’t go through life with a catcher’s mitt on both hands.  You need to be able to throw something back sometimes.

I’ve learned that if you pursue happiness, it will elude you
But, if you focus on God, your family, your friends, the needs of others,your work and doing the very best you can, happiness will find you.

I’ve learned that whenever I decide something with an open heart, I usually make the right decision.

I’ve learned that even when I have pains, I don’t have to be one.

I’ve learned that every day, you should reach out and touch someone…

People love that human touch — holding hands, a warm hug, or just a friendly pat on the back.

 

I’ve learned that I still have a lot to learn.

{ 40 comments }

outlook.

approach.

I am thankful to have learned long ago the importance of attitude. Each of us has a choice each day how we will approach the day, what our attitude will be. The day may start out well, and then challenges appear. We also have a choice as to how we will react to these challenges. We cannot change the inevitable, but we certainly have some control over how it will impact us.

It is a remarkable thing, and it is up to us.

I have had a few challenges recently, some big and some … inconsequential in the overall picture. There have been many opportunities to react in a positive way, and honestly? That was not always my first reaction.

I like to think I quickly recovered, though.

I have never been one to place blame. It’s just not where I naturally go. As an employer dealing with conflict, I chose to focus on an answer to a problem rather than whose fault it was. ( I know, sometimes this must be dealt with, I am realistic! :) )

________________________________________________

Along with the encouraging words and wonderful support of the awesome people I am lucky to know, I am Switching My Focus.

I am excited about our new gym and am working out every day (more details soon Heather, I promise!)

I am continuing my daily juicing, trying to make it twice each day!

Keeping the negativity to a minimum. I am pretty positive, so when I see negativity it’s glaring and ugly. I deleted someone from facebook recently because every status update was a complaint. That’s no fun.

Therapeutic massage, cleansing steam, body brushing and Epsom baths.

Continuing to support and love those around me, through hard times, while taking care of myself and distancing myself from the drama.

Begin each day with intention.

Also, today I am beginning the Two Week Challenge with Amazing Grass.

This was today’s post workout recovery:

nutty vanilla chai smoothie

1 frozen banana, chopped
1 1/2 cups coconut water
1 scoop Vanilla Chai Amazing Meal
1 tablespoon maca
1 tablespoon almond butter

Delicious.

If you were to Switch You Focus, what would it be to?

Happy Monday!

{ 35 comments }

you cannot NOT smile

by Kristina Sloggett

in real life wisdom

I needed some smiles in my day today, and I thought I’d share with you.

her name is Happiness.


{ 0 comments }

Real Life Wisdom

by Kristina Sloggett

in real life wisdom

My Awesome Friend Jen shared this recently, and I got such a kick out of it I thought I would share with you all.

‘Tis funny…

*AND* I am so excited because she is *finally* moving back to Portland !!  *GAAH* I cannot tell you how excited I am, because she is One Of The Good Ones…  seriously, she is awesome and fun and… for those of you coming to Portland next August to meet me for Vida Vegan, I’m going to make sure she is there. You can all meet this awesome friend of mine. :D

…and because she recently went to Kauai and took a photo of something pretty cool, well, I’ll share that first:


This is Real Life Wisdom…

1. I think part of a best friend’s job should be to immediately clear your computer history if you die.

2. Nothing stinks more than that moment during an argument when you realize you’re wrong.

3. I totally take back all those times I didn’t want to nap when I was younger.

4. There is great need for a sarcasm font.

5. How the hell are you supposed to fold a fitted sheet?

6. Was learning cursive really necessary?

7. Map Quest really needs to start their directions on #5. I’m pretty sure I know how to get out of my neighborhood.

8. Obituaries would be a lot more interesting if they told you how the person died.

9. I can’t remember the last time I wasn’t at least kind of tired.

10. Bad decisions make good stories.

11. You never know when it will strike, but there comes a moment at work when you know that you just aren’t going to do anything productive for the rest of the day.

12. Can we all just agree to ignore whatever comes after Blue Ray? I don’t want to have to restart my collection…again.

13. I’m always slightly terrified when I exit out of Word and it asks me if I want to save any changes to my ten-page research paper that I swear I did not make any changes to.

14. “Do not machine wash or tumble dry” means I will never wash this – ever.

15. I hate when I just miss a call by the last ring (Hello? Hello? Darn it!), but when I immediately call back, it rings nine times and goes to voice mail. What did you do after I didn’t answer? Drop the phone and run away?

16. I hate leaving my house confident and looking good and then not seeing anyone of importance the entire day. What a waste.

17. I keep some people’s phone numbers in my phone just so I know not to answer when they call.

18. I think the freezer deserves a light as well.

19. I disagree with Kay Jewelers. I would bet on any given Friday or Saturday night more kisses begin with Miller Lite than Kay.

21. Sometimes, I’ll watch a movie that I watched when I was younger and suddenly realize I had no idea what the heck was going on when I first saw it.

22. I would rather try to carry 10 plastic grocery bags in each hand than take 2 trips to bring my groceries in.

23. The only time I look forward to a red light is when I’m trying to finish a text.

24. I have a hard time deciphering the fine line between boredom and hunger.

25. How many times is it appropriate to say “What?” before you just nod and smile because you still didn’t hear or understand a word they said?

26. I love the sense of camaraderie when an entire line of cars team up to prevent an A-hole from cutting in at the front. Stay strong, brothers and sisters!

27. Shirts get dirty. Underwear gets dirty. Pants? Pants never get dirty, and you can wear them forever.

28. Is it just me or do high school kids look older and older every year?

29. There’s no worse feeling than that millisecond you’re sure you are going to die after leaning your chair back a little too far.

30. Sometimes I’ll look down at my watch 3 consecutive times and still not know what time it is.

32. Even under ideal conditions people have trouble locating their car keys in a pocket, finding their cell phone, and Pinning the Tail on the Donkey – but I’d bet everyone can find and push the snooze button from 3 feet away, in about 1.7 seconds, eyes closed, first time, every time!

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