The first job I had was at a retail pharmacy in the front end. I stocked the shelves, rang out customers and did inventory off and on for a full decade. Oh, of course, I helped in the one hour photo lab, which has come to be almost obsolete today.
When I worked in the front end and there weren’t any customers around I would read through the latest tabloids. And of course, sarcasm inserted here, like in any good-in-the-know teenager I knew the name of every celebrity along with what album was dropping when or the latest movie coming out. It was crazy how important their lives looked. But now, where are they? And to be honest, does it matter?
The reality is…
No one wants forgotten about.
I see it with the students I work with. A foster child is in the mercy of where they are being placed in the moment. Several of students have been in 3 different schools within six months and often without notice. They have to make new friends, often times without closure from the old relationships, if they even had the chance to make a friend.
I see it in friends pushing through the motions. It may not seem like it, but how often do we walk through everyday – same job, same gas station, same house – and feel so isolated? With the common question of “If I leave would anyone care?”
None of us want to be forgotten.
And so, as an alternative, we fight to become over-eccentric, life of the party & the talk of the town. Maybe, if we become this, we won’t be forgotten.
We’ve forgotten that an impact in the ordinary. The cashier who looks in your eye and says “Have a great day!” so genuinely. Or the little child, who you don’t even know, running up to you and to excitedly say, “I like your shirt.” Or a stranger putting a hand on your shoulder to tell you what a beautiful person you are.
The simple, ordinary interactions are often overlooked. Yet, at least for me, these interactions are the most edifying. I sense the love spreading in its simplest form – a phrase, an interaction, a small physical touch. The world doesn’t seem so big and I don’t feel so small. It’s a new day where no one gets forgotten.
Be an ordinary, everyday hero.