Going the Extra Mile

Today was one of those mornings:
  • The alarm didn't go off so we got up late. 
  • I have had a horrible headache since 7 p.m. last night. 
  • I had a meeting with Colin's teacher, and we got stuck in traffic.
  • I realized halfway to school that I had life my cell phone at home.
  • Let's not talk about the meeting with the teacher.
  • I hurried to work - no phone, head-aching, jaw hurting (apparently I clench my jaw when stressed...)
  • Upset student waiting in the lobby to walk to me as soon as I walked in the door.
All I wanted was some coffee.  And quiet. Obviously that was not going to happen.

I sat down with the student ready to take the brunt of whatever had happened to upset her. 

Now I can't get into details about students. But it turns out, she had a simple situation. One that could have been taken care of yesterday when she spoke to someone else, but that person had given her wrong information. Thus setting into motion the events that happened today. Not to mention, causing this student worry and anxiousness over something that really wasn't a problem.

I answered her questions, cleared her confusion, printed her a new certificate.... and she and her husband went on their way. Happy. Thanking me for my help. For going the extra mile.

These little things are the big things...

Connor's teacher said that to me once when I spoke with her about an issue he was having with another student.  It really wasn't a big deal, but I thought she should be aware in case something else happened.  She thanked me for letting her know, and said "these little things are the big things to them".  And she's right. 

I've applied that way of thinking to my kids at home since then. Sometimes things that are so trivial to me as an adult truly upset one of my kids. I used to dismiss it, but now this quote keeps going through my head...  "these little things are the big things to them".

But what about with adults? The same thought process should apply. This student's particular situation was a BIG deal to her. It was causing her distress, yet on my end it was a simple fix.  Five minutes out of my day to brighten someone else's is not a lot to ask.  

I find myself getting crabby with life in my old age. At times, I feel I'm losing my patience with the world. What I realized lately is that I have become lazy in life. I'm tired of always making the effort. But that's wrong. That's my bad. I need to suck it up like I tell my kids to when something doesn't go their way. I need to start making an effort again. Even though I am bone tired of doing it all and giving my all, that's what I am meant to do. As a mother, as wife, in my job, in my home...I need to focus on the little things that mean so much to other people. Because in doing so, I find myself happier. I find my self-worth isn't so much about what makes me happy, but about how it feels to make others happy.

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