Sunday, May 8, 2016

Wishing happy mothers day has problems.



This is a first,  I have never before shared my Facebook posts  on this blog, because I get so much more feedback on FB from friends.  However, today is wistful and here is my  brief:

  From a friend's page with my story. It's why we should give away smiles, they cost nothing & can make someone's day. I always try to say something cheerful to cashiers, salesclerks, etc. They earn their money dealing with people. You just never know.  
.This is so true, today's evidence---each Sunday I pick up a Sunday Pioneer Press, MN newspaper at the local gas & foods place & I get to know the cashiers. We always converse weekly about our day, the week we had or? Today the young man who's been there about 6months, about whom I know some things such as he would love to have a motor home & travel like we do, he's had some health issues the past year, including when he was gone a couple weeks, hospitalized with kidney stones. This morning he greeted me with, "is it safe to wish you a good mother's day." I replied, "sure, thanks but why do you ask?" He said, "Well one customer just yelled at me because she is not a mother." Me, "aww, that's too bad. Maybe she was having a bad day." He,"She usually is grumpy, not like you." Me laughing,"Well you must get all kinds in here." He, "yes, but there is something in your eyes, can I ask if everything is ok." Me, "oh it's nothing, this day is bittersweet for me, my mother died 12 years ago, my only son died almost 8 years ago, I never liked the commercial Hallmark card aspect of this holiday. That's about it." He, "oh I'm sorry, should have known." Me, "how could you know, & please do not worry about that." He, "your eyes, there is something deep there, I should know. I lost my children, my son too several years ago, and my daughter 7 years ago. It's always in the eyes." Me thru tears,, "shoots, now I'm going to puddle up my face" he reached over, grabbed my hand & said, "you have a real good day, now I know another reason I like you." I told him I was sorry about his family and said,"It never gets easy, but at least the jagged edges scab over & it doesn’t hurt so much all the time. You have a blessed day now."
Most people not only do not know the trials of the person near them, I say that many people here where I live don't know much about anyone unless they have known them all their lives, common around these parts.  Even when they do know they ignore, so different from living in CA.  Maybe because there we were from everywhere maybe because here they have been only here all there lives.  Don't they realize how that fells?  Guess not.  They don't ask, do they think that is  being polite or do they just not give a fig?  I admit it is why I find  people here cold, not open.The neighbor on one side of me waves, is cordial if I see her outside, yet I have never been invited into her home.  This is very strange to me.  Whatever, they are enclosed with themselves.  Maybe it is left for souls like me to  make head roads.  Yes more and more I appreciate that I outreach to others.    

I copied my post here from FB because I wanted to remember this. 

5 comments:

  1. You are doing what so many are fearful to do, Pat, and that is to really listen and respond to another person. When people ask :how are you" they really don't expect someone to really say much more than "fine" or "ok." Even though we live in a large mill apt with several hundred people, there are truly no more than a dozen people we have really come to know. People just don't care about the stranger nearby sad to say.

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    1. It's true that "how are you" doesn't mean someone really wants to know. My late uncle used to say, "can't complain, no one would listen." I find it's not the same now as when we lived in northern CA, we had a much larger circle of friends there from work (we had 2 separate different careers), church, hobbies, etc.. Well, sometimes we have to stretch. But I tend to meet folks easily. Saturday evening eating out for Jerry's birthday we had a great conversation in the restaurant with couples dining at tables either side of us, the WI way I guess. Yesterday afternoon I was out walking and 2 young men drove by in a car, one leaned out the window, waved and shouted"Happy Mother's Day." Now that wouldn't happen everywhere. I remember my Grandpap used to say "where there are people there is trouble, so many people, too many troubles." That's why we prefer small towns, the urban areas and more populated areas seem to drive people to huddle in, I am not sure if it's weariness of proximity to others or wariness about human interaction. I noticed how much northern CA had changed with the over population when we were there in Oct, as I replied below to Terra. It takes a long time to establish more than a passing acquaintance, such is the case here, most people have only lived in this area all their lives and their parents before them. We don't have all the organized efforts which I personally dislike anyway, groups coordinated etc, but if we want that, just across the river La Crosse where I go to the Y daily offers everything. I do like our area and the slow pace. I used to entertain a lot more in CA not so here, most folks prefer to meet at local restaurants, bars, etc. I would rather have them in but I have learned they then feel somehow intimidated because that is not their lifestyle and they don't reciprocate. Friends in PA & I were talking about how much that has changed over the years too. We all recall our parents having dinner parties, card games, etc at their homes. People tend not to do so now there either. Years ago on one of our visits here from CA we stopped at a truck stop/restaurant on the IA MN border and the waitress asked where we were going, etc. We said to La Crescent MN and she said, "Oh I figured you were from MN or WI" "Huh?" I questioned, "why?" She said because you both are smiling and friendly, we see all kinds of travelers here, but only the ones from our states are happy, the happiest people live in MN & WI. So many others are too grouchy." Well I told her we actually were from CA and that Jerry was a native MN but I was from PA. She laughed and said, "well could'a fooled me, you're pleasant enough to be from here." We all had a good laugh. Now that I have lived here awhile I do notice a difference in the faces of people compared to when we travel east or even south, and I do love the south. But people in these parts do appear much happier, less guarded, more at ease, content, approachable. It's difficult to determine and harder to describe but the waitress was on to something. We have a wide stretch of acquaintances now all over the country from our RV rallies, some of us will be back together in Indiana mid June this year. I guess I could never be a hermit but some areas of the country people are not as accepting either.

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  2. And although it may be bittersweet for you, I send my belated wishes for a Happy Mother's Day to you.

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  3. I live in California and do not find neighbors very friendly like what you are finding in MN. I have a great circle of friends though that I met in church, at work and in a writers' group. I hope you have a great circle of friends; you sound friendly with your getting to know the grocery store checker, etc. You are right about no one knowing what someone they see is going through.

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    1. I know that CA has changed a lot the last 30 years, we lived in No. CA for over 40 years and always thought we'd stay there. It was a foothills area but I worked in Sacramento, the Capital and the commute grew worse each year for the 23 miles on the bumper to bumper freeway. We had 7+ acres and the neighbors were all friendly, we had gatherings from time to time parties, the kids all went to school together so we established long time friends even among those who were natives. We knew everyone on the hillsides. I had lots of friends through work too and hobbies, reading group, gardening, roses, church etc. But here today not such a large circle, while these folks are friendly, waving, smiling, etc. they really stay within the same closed circle they have had all their lives and most of them have lived here for generations. But for CA, we keep touch with the few friends who stayed there, so many like us moved when we retired. If anyone had ever told me I wouldn't be living in CA I would have said they were nuts. This small town is Jerry's hometown and while I had elderly family in PA it put me closer to care for them.This is one of the most beautiful areas in the country and we have traveled all over. However, it is not conducive to newbies, but as Jerry says it took me maybe two months to know everyone in town & township. I do get acquainted very easily and tend to meet people here and there too, easily, he says it's because I'm nosy, I prefer to say curious. Still I do miss the good times with close friends we so enjoyed in CA, but that's over now. Here most people like to meet out at a restaurant for drinks, dinner. I was used to entertaining at home, that is a seldom event here other than families. It's different in the Midwest and the east is different yet more so. We were back to CA in Oct. to visit and it's more congested, traffic and people and folks are not nearly as friendly and open as they used to be. It's like the more people, the more insular they become. For the 2 weeks there I took it as a challenge to ever get one cashier to smile, speak to me, etc. One young gal I saw every day for a week while walking to get a newspaper, I always greeted her but she would keep her head down, barely acknowledging. On about the 9th day, I chirped "good moringing to you, what a beautiful day" and she looked up and smiled. Then she said, "I really like when you come in, you are always so cheerful, I wish I could be like you." Wow! A breakthru! I told her, "It's easy 1 smile at a time." Change is constant, not always for the best.

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