Saturday, May 11, 2013

Missing the obvious

Yesterday I read with some sadness the story of a young lady who died at a Chicago Cubs baseball game. If you didn't hear about it, here is the story.

Maureen Oleskiewicz
It seems she died doing something she truly loved, as the article indicated she was a huge Cubs fan. And she was at the game with her brother. I can identify with that, because going to games with sisters has been a big part of my life. And it's probably also why the story really grabbed me.

One thing that shocked me was the way it all happened. It seems that when Ms. Oleskiewicz choked on a hot dog, she was so unable to breathe that she didn't make any noticeable choking sounds. Or screams. From what I can tell, she just passed out from the lack of oxygen and fell over. That was the first her brother knew anything was wrong. By the time they got medical help, it was too late.

It's hard for us to understand how that could happen. How could he not know anything was wrong?

But you know, I think I walk around like that every day. I try to care about people - love my neighbor as myself. But I sit next to people at work, at a restaurant, at a movie, and yes, at a ball game...and don't have a clue what trouble might be brewing in their lives. There's got to be some, because I know I've got my share. And so do you, right?

How great would it be if I were sensitive enough to know when someone was throwing out subtle hints that they want help? Instead, I cruise along in my own little world making sure my own needs are met. But that's not what we were made for. We were made to love each other - pray for each other, help each other, listen to each other. And whatever else might clear up some of one another's personal darkness.

Should the young lady's brother have been able to tell she was choking? Perhaps, but I understand how he missed it since she was able to cry out for help.

May I be willing to cry out when I need help with my life...and listen for others who might be wanting to.

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