#89: Struggling To Help Others
Saturday, September 26, 2009
This morning I saw runners participating in a hospital fundraiser.
Actually, the people at the end were more walkers than runners. Sweat streaked their soaked shirts and caked their faces. Their energy was clearly almost gone. Some barely qualified as a walker; one used a cane, another hobbled so much I wanted to offer him a ride.
But I knew better.
They, be they runners or walkers, didn't want help and likely would have refused it. Just so they could struggle on for another block, another mile, as pain gripped their calves and their feet swelled and sweat stung their eyes.
Yes, I knew better than to offer a ride. They didn't want one. What they wanted was to finish the event. They were dedicated and so they persevered.
The look of anguish on their faces was pitiful.
They were to be admired, though, not only for their dedication to finishing, but for their efforts to further the cause of better medical care for women and children.
That's what was beneath their agony. To help others they will never meet, strangers who in the future will need extraordinary care.
I honked and waved gave a thumbs up as I passed. In return, I received smiles and feeble waves and the feeling that despite the troubles of the world, here were people foregoing their Saturday morning to donate their time and push their bodies nearly beyond endurance to benefit a higher cause.
What they couldn't have known as they struggled step by painful step was that their passion would bring tears of appreciation to my eyes and passion and respect to my heart.
It was a great way to begin the day.