I have always thought that Behind Closed Doors would be a great title for a novel. Sometimes, the people whose lives we think are perfect, who we find ourselves envious of, actually have very painful stories and struggles behind the closed doors of their homes and hearts. Some people are just really good hiding behind a facade of all is perfect in my life right now while inside they are crying, in denial, or just trying to keep all the pieces together.
Sometimes, I think we forget we were never meant to navigate this thing called life alone. I have come to realize that we all have our struggles. For some people, it is financial worries. For others, it is the painful sense of rejection. Some struggle with self identify and self worth. Sometimes, I find myself struggling with a combination of all of them.
Point is…we all struggle, we all have our insecurities, we all have good days and really bad days. Two things I have learned from working in long term care with families, residents, and staff…1) to be compassionate and not judge others because everyone has a life story and 2) sometimes, I need to reach out to a trusted friend when what I really might want to do is retreat and be alone.
Some days, all you need is a coffee break with a friend, a small group meeting with some church friends, or a really good laugh or cry with some close friends or family. Maybe it’s you, maybe it’s them, but we all need to know someone cares. A smile truly can go a very long way.
Working in long term care, as families walk the journey of aging parents and all that can go with it including finances, dementia, choosing facilities, the dying process…sometimes all it takes is one person’s smile, compassionate words, or simple gesture of caring to make all the difference in the world.