You First

by Frank

Stop sign

Photo by Robert Linder

I had a long hard day. Work was horrible. It was so busy and everyone I talked to today was so upset. Not to mention I left my wallet at home and didn’t have money to buy lunch. I was starving. We are talking about 9 ½ hours with no food. Just so you understand how the lack of food effects me I will compare myself to Eric Bana being slapped in the face by someone he HATES. I turn green and start stomping and throwing things.

At the end of my shift I call home to ask my wife to grab my wallet. I wanted her to meet me at the door so I could hastily go pick up dinner. During our conversation we decide on Boston Market and I quickly made my way on a frantic pursuit of my first meal of the day @ 5:00p.m.

As I am halfway to my destination my cell phone rings. Stuck in traffic I determine I am creeping along slowly enough and it would be safe to answer. It was the Mrs. She was informing me that a friend of ours was stranded and needed a ride home from work. My mind said, “I will get him after I pick up Boston Market.” 🙂 My mouth said, “Give him the number to the cell and I will pick him up.” Using today’s latest technology, pen and paper, what GPS cost way too much for me, I was able to pinpoint his exact location.

He was 10 minutes in the opposite direction.

Traffic was a mess. A drive that would normally take 10 minutes took 30 minutes today. With my lack of food I thought I had a bad attitude. Clearly compared to the way people were cutting me off and blowing their horns I was a saint. Now you would assume the person that I am helping is a close friend of mine. He actually is a friend of a friend.

Humbly he jumped in the car and told me how grateful he was that I would give him a ride. He helped me navigate the way to his apartment and walked in the house with a big smile on his face. Normally he would walk home from his job today the rain stopped him from making that journey. If I could describe the distance I would say it was about the distance Marlin and Dory traveled to find in his son in Finding Nemo.

He kept saying thank you. I just kept thinking about times when I had been in his exact situation and had someone tell me no.

In this life we will have plenty of opportunities to leave lasting impressions on the people we come in contact with. I don’t know if I will ever see this person again but I am glad I was there when he needed me. I was hungry, tired, angry, and stressed but some things are just more important. If there is a need you have and I have the resources to help I hope I have the strength to put you first.

Can you put someone else’s needs before your own?

If you do the feeling you get afterward is indescribable. Trust me. Go find out for yourself.