Friday, December 05, 2014

Lessons From the Edge

You can have a pleasant conversation, if you try hard enough.

I love telling stories about the folks at Edgewood who are lovable and enjoyable and who always bring a smile to my face. They're the kind of people who make "working" pure joy.
BUT, not everyone who lives there can be accurately described by those words. Some folks are kinda fussy. In fact, a few of them are a bit prickly. They're the kind of people who often take exception to statements like, "Nice day, isn't it?"
Typically, when I see these folks as we pass in the hallway I will smile at them and greet them by name. Even saying, "Good morning," or "Good afternoon," if I'm feeling really brave. But one day this week, that easy-way-out was not possible. Because I wasn't passing "prickly" in the hallway. I was walking with her. Yes, I could have walked faster and avoided her, but I was making sure she got to her apartment safely. Besides, that would have been rude. *ahem*

As we were walking, I thought of asking V what her best memory was about Christmas. But then I considered her likely answer and decided I didn't want to get her started on a negative streak.
So I searched my brain for a safer topic.
Finally, I asked if she enjoyed playing in the snow when she was a kid. She gave me a half-hearted, nothing-is-going-to-make-me-happy affirmative response, and I mumbled to myself, Strike two!
But I wasn't out yet, so I decided to keep on trying.
Rather than asking another question, I told V about the place we used to always build snow forts when I was a kid. I tried to describe how wonderful it was, and how much I enjoyed it.

And do you know what she did?

She smiled, and acknowledged that it's fun to build snow forts!

OK. I understand if you cannot appreciate how significant that positive interaction was for me. You'll just have to trust me. But that one little statement to me from V was all the proof I needed to know:
You can have a pleasant conversation, if you try hard enough.

Is there a "prickly" in your life with whom it is difficult to speak? Don't give up!

Disclaimer: The ideas and opinions expressed in this post are my own, and may not necessarily reflect those of Vista Springs Living Centers.

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