Well, 2008 is nearly finished.. it's been a bit like a box of chocolates hasn't it?! - never quite knowing what's coming out of the box next. For many, it's been an incredibly difficult one - a year in which we have seen the misery inflicted on families worldwide as a result of the global recession. Job cuts, a major slump in industry and the housing market-deep uncertainty will be weighing very heavily on the minds of millions as we approach the New Year.
I wanted to just share something that I stumbled upon last week- Simply because I felt it might just throw a slightly different emphasis on this time of the year and the way in which we may be approaching 2009.
On Wednesday (New Years Eve) our usual group of patients will be meeting up for their Day Therapy Session at our local hospice. I am a volunteer and was desperately trying to think of something that would be a welcome diversion from their situation at this time of the year- trying to think of something a little upbeat along with a large dose of the 'feel-good factor'. Hmm..not easy.. Nothing immediately came to mind that would be appropriate for this very special group of people. I decided to 'sleep on it', hoping that inspiration would come from somewhere, and fortunately it did - just simply one word. Hero.
Why 'hero' and, more importantly what was I going to do with or about that word??! ..We are all familiar with the numerous 'award' type media events ...The Oscars..The Golden Globes..The Television Awards etc etc.. So, I thought, what fun it would be for us at the hospice to hold our very own 'Hero Awards' ceremony for each of the patients. - Each of the patients will receive their own 'certificate' with a little humorous comment or an 'in joke' along with a rosette. Okay, maybe we can't have too many glasses of bubbly like the celebs do, but with a glass of sherry who knows the heights of humour that will be reached! I just happen to believe that every single person who walks through those doors of the hospice are hero's - staff included, so everyone involved in our little unit will be receiving their very own 'Special Hero Award' too! Looks like Wednesday may be a busy one - If nothing else, if each of the patients return home with a renewed sense of themselves, and a smile on their faces, then it will be worth it.
So what has a 'Hero Award Service' really got to do with the rest of us facing the uncertainty of a New Year? Lots actually, or at least I think so. I believe that every person facing the possibility of redundancy,the loss of our savings/pensions and so forth, the reality of losing their home, the family desperately trying to hold it together in the midst of financial ruin, the mental and physical illness that can and does stem from being under tremendous pressure - each and every one of these people is a hero.
Okay, so maybe the answer isn't that we all all give each other simplistic 'awards' or rosettes - but what we can give is our time, our friendship, our patience and understanding.Of course we may be in a position to offer practical or financial help - but most importantly we can give our energy, our patience - and above everything else - respect.
My Best Wishes for 2009...and don't forget there's a hero standing not far from you right now! - Do tell me some of your 'hero stories' - It's good to share and I would love to hear from you.
Love Molly x