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Vieraskieliset / In-english

Blog: Care and com­pas­si­on

Päivämies-verkkolehti
Vieraskieliset / In-english
12.8.2019 10.56

Juttua muokattu:

23.12. 02:44
2019122302444920190812105600

It is a bril­li­ant March day. I sit down to rest my feet and wait for the cof­fee to drip. I just came in af­ter a skiing trip. The sun spark­led on the snow, and my skis made a nice crunc­hing noi­se on the snow. Spar­rows twit­te­red in the shrub­be­ry, and wa­ter was drip­ping cheer­ful­ly from the ea­ves. While skiing wit­hout any ca­res, my me­mo­ries tra­ve­led back to some old events and ex­pe­rien­ces.

I re­mem­be­red a Fri­day, the last school day be­fo­re the win­ter break, many ye­ars ago. I was stan­ding in lunch line next to the eighth-gra­ders. The line slow­ly inc­hed to­ward the ca­te­ring desk. The boys kept mo­ving rest­les­s­ly on their ran­gy legs, and the girls were whis­pe­ring sec­rets to each ot­her. There was an at­mosp­he­re of ex­pec­ta­ti­on for the break. Sud­den­ly I felt so­met­hing touch my foot.

– You have such a ter­rib­ly small foot. Size 35, is it? I al­re­a­dy have size 43 shoes.

Next to my foot I saw the wet leg of over­long je­ans and a worn win­ter trai­ner with its velc­ro strap han­ging open. When I loo­ked up, I saw cheer­ful blue ey­es bet­ween pimp­ly cheeks and rump­led bangs. The boy I had had to scold du­ring the pre­vi­ous les­son had found a ten­der tone to his gruff voi­ce.

The boys soon got their lunch. There were on­ly a few hours to go be­fo­re the one-week break! Sun­light made bright patc­hes on the floor.

I star­ted my break, too. I joi­ned my sis­ter’s fa­mi­ly for a va­ca­ti­on at a ca­bin. Sa­tur­day went by quick­ly. There was a track on the lake that we used for a small skiing race, and the kids lo­ved pla­ying in the snow. Eve­ry­bo­dy was hung­ry, and af­ter din­ner and sau­na we were all ti­red. We be­gan to pre­pa­re the beds. I was to sleep in a woo­den pull-out bed.

I tried to lift off the woo­den top, but my hands slip­ped, and the he­a­vy top fell right ac­ross my toes. The pain brought te­ars in­to my ey­es. My toes were soon so swol­len there was al­most not enough space for them all. We put the woo­den top back, and I made my bed sa­fe­ly on it. I lied down to sleep with cold packs ac­ross my toes and pil­lows un­der my feet. I saw many pairs of com­pas­si­o­na­te ey­es around me, and small hands pat­ted me for con­so­la­ti­on.

– Oh, that sure hurts! But you will soon feel bet­ter.

One of the child­ren cried and said she could not even look.

I gu­ess I slept some that night. When I ope­ned my ey­es in the mor­ning, the child­ren were around me as­king how I was fee­ling. I had a lot of lo­ving care and con­so­la­ti­on. And I my­self con­so­led one sad child.

I could not ski any­mo­re, so I just sat by the win­dow loo­king at the child­ren hap­pi­ly rom­ping in the snow. One of my nep­hews had a new pair of soft pad­ded win­ter boots. I was ab­le to put them on a few days la­ter, and be­fo­re the win­ter break was over, I ma­na­ged to walk out­doors with my toes ban­da­ged and pro­tec­ted by woo­len socks.

I felt truly gra­te­ful for those boots that I could bor­row. When I was back at school af­ter the break, I had to walk ups­tairs slow­ly and ca­re­ful­ly. I saw cu­ri­ous looks and he­ard some whis­pers. I told my stu­dents what had hap­pe­ned.

The boy who had com­men­ted on the size of my feet loo­ked se­ri­ous and con­cer­ned. The stu­dents were cle­ar­ly ob­ser­ving my abi­li­ty to walk. Some of them as­ked if the ac­ci­dent had hurt very bad­ly, and ot­hers won­de­red if I had al­re­a­dy grown new toe nails.

When spring came, I fi­nal­ly got rid of the pad­ded win­ter boots. Slow­ly but su­re­ly my toes he­a­led and grew new nails.

The boy who had com­pa­red our shoes left school. I have not seen him or he­ard about him sin­ce, but I hope he has not lost his com­pas­si­o­na­te at­ti­tu­de. It was ea­sy to sen­se that at­ti­tu­de, alt­hough he was in the mid­d­le of the pain and tur­moil of gro­wing up.

Small child­ren are sen­si­ti­ve to the pain of ot­her pe­op­le, es­pe­ci­al­ly their dear ones. They al­so show that by being lo­ving and ca­ring. It is ea­sy to think that teens do not care for ot­her pe­op­le, or even no­ti­ce them pro­per­ly. But that is not al­wa­ys so. We as adults may just fail to re­cog­ni­ze their way of sho­wing their love and ca­ring. A small ges­tu­re, a smile, a touch, an unex­pec­ted­ly gent­le qu­es­ti­on – all that may stand for com­pas­si­on, re­mor­se and even apo­lo­gy.

All pe­op­le long for love and care, and it is al­so im­por­tant to be ab­le to show love and care to so­me­o­ne el­se. It is he­art-war­ming when a stor­my, re­bel­li­ous teen ta­kes off his or her mask to re­ve­al the smile be­hind it. And squ­a­re­ly meets yo­ur eye.

Text: Ai­li Pa­sa­nen

Trans­la­ti­on: Sirk­ka-Lii­sa Lei­no­nen

You will find the ori­gi­nal fin­nish blog post here.

11.8.2020

Joka heik­koa sor­taa, her­jaa hä­nen Luo­jaan­sa, joka Luo­jaa kun­ni­oit­taa, ar­mah­taa köy­hää. Sa­nanl. 14:31

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