The Gift of Joy and Happiness
Value in Focus: Making a Difference
Lindsay comes to Jason’s house. Rocky and Melissa are already there.
“Have you heard about ‘International Day of Older Persons’? she asks. “No, I don’t know anything about this Day,” says Rocky. “When is that?” questions Jenny. “Mom told me it is this Sunday,” says Lindsay. “What is so special about this day?” questions Jason.
“My mom said this day is celebrated to let people know about the importance of the older generation in our lives and that they deserve to be respected and loved,” enlarges Lindsay.
“I’m sure all of us already know that. I love my grandparents, great aunts, and uncles,” says Melissa. “It’s true, we are especially kind and loving towards them and we take care of them too, but some old persons are neglected or are alone in this world,” explains Lindsay.
“Do you mean the ones who stay in old peoples’ home?” questions, Jennifer. “Yes, I do and mom wants to do something for them on this special day,” answers Lindsay.
“Let’s go to your house and find out her plans,” says Melissa. They troop to Lindsay’s house and talk to her mom. “I want to spend some quality time with them and give them some gifts,” enlarges Mrs White, Lindsay’s mom. “What a nice plan aunty. May we accompany you,” asks Jason. “You can,” replies Mrs White.
“Be here on Sunday morning all of you and I’ll take you with me,” she adds. “Can we take gifts for them?” questions Melissa. “You must do as your mom says,” smiles Lindsay’s mom.
The children go for a walk. “Do you know what gifts your mom is taking?” asks Rocky. “Yes, she told me. She will take playing cards, socks, tins of biscuits and dry fruits,” announces Lindsay. “That’s so nice. I’ll talk to my mom,” says Rocky.
His mom, Mrs King says, “I think it is very good of you to want to visit those people. Your aunt Agatha has called me to go with her to the supermarket on Sunday, otherwise, I would have gone with you Jason too. I will send gifts though. I have some jams and pickles in airtight bottles and I’ll make corn and spinach quiches plus some chicken and cheese sandwiches too,” plans Mrs King.
“Wow, that will be great, mom. Please pack them up early Sunday morning for me to take,” says Rocky. “I will,” smiles his mom.
Melissa’s mom is more than ready to let her go with her friends. “Since it is a very good cause, I will bake several cupcakes and brownies for you to take. I would have come but it is the day of the cleaner’s visit and I need to stay at home,” says Melinda Griffith, Melissa’s mom. “I’m sure they will love your gift mom,” grins her daughter.
Jason’s mom is free and wants to join them. “I am going to get gifts from the new ‘Gift Gallery’ that has opened on Walnut Street recently,” decide Mrs Hudson, Jason and Jennifer’s mom. “Can we come to help you choose gifts?” questions, Jenny. “Yes, you can,” smiles her mom.
Next morning, the moms get busy with their preparations. Lindsay’s mom packs the gifts together with her daughter. Melissa’s mom starts baking. Ricky’s mom lines up the jam and pickles bottles and goes to the grocery store for items needed to make the quiches and sandwiches.
Jason and his sister accompany their mom to the gift place. They are welcomed by the owner Mr Archer. “How can I help you?” he asks. “I want to see some gift items for the people at the old people’s home,” replies Mrs White. “Well, please look around. I’m sure you will find what you need,” smiles Mr Archer.
Jason suggests some cuff – links, ties, shaving crime, hairbrushes and men’s body wash and shampoos. His mom is happy with his choice and asks the owner to pack those with ‘M’ written on each packet. Jenny likes trinkets, cosmetics, and coin pouches. The owner packs those with ‘W’ written on them.
“Thanks for visiting my store,” says the owner. “I love your gift store,” announces Jason. “I will get my friends here when they want to buy gifts for someone,” says Jennifer, with a wide smile. “I will be happy to serve them too. Here are some candies for you,” says Mr Archer, handing some to the kids. “Thanks and goodbye Sir.”
On Sunday morning, all the children and Mrs Hudson assemble at Lindsay’s house. “Let’s go, aunt,” chirps Melissa.
They drive to the old people’s home and get down at the entrance. The manager meets them and is surprised to learn that they want to spend time with the residents and have gifts for them. He takes the group inside and introduces them to the residents. The old people are overjoyed with gifts.
They open them with the enthusiasm of children and can’t stop thanking the visitors. They hug the kids with joy, many smiling toothless smiles and shake hands with the two ladies. The children sit and talk to them, telling them funny stories, which bring shouts of loud laughter.
Mrs White and Mrs Hudson listen to the lonely ladies pouring their hearts out with stories of bygone days. They share their private fears and worries and the two ladies give them the best gift of empathy and understanding. Tears fall but they are mostly of appreciation for a listening ear by their side.
An hour or two passes with the children playing monopoly with the old people who have only each other for company – residents, laughing and chattering away to the old people’s delight.
At last, it is time to leave but not before the manager comes and gives a speech.
“Today on ‘International Day of Older Persons’, I am happy to tell everyone that Mrs White, Mrs Hudson and the children have made a big difference in the lives of our friends at this centre. Both of you ladies have taught the gift of giving time, care and compassion to these children. They know how to make a difference in the lives of old people who have only each other for company, their compassion and smiles are worth a million. Together with this, the wonderful gifts of kindness and joy are greatly appreciated by all of us.”
“Hear, hear,” shout the residents and clap their hands happily.
Value: Making a Difference.
Celebrating International Day of Older Persons: October 1st, 2017
Written By: Amita is a Story Writer and a Spiritual Writer. To share your feedback, write to her at [email protected], or leave a comment below.