On my way to work this morning I saw a small deer in the ditch alongside the road. As I drove by I saw it jump up to run like it had been sleeping. I drove a little bit further wondering if it was okay and couldn’t talk myself out of turning around to make sure it was okay. I didn’t see the deer the first time by and thought, “good, it was okay” and turned around to head back to work. As I was driving back by I saw it move in the ditch. I pulled over, shined my lights sort of in the direction of the deer, and got out of the car to see what was wrong with her. I got a foot away from her before she tried to stand and turn toward me. She fell instantly due to what looked like a broken back or rear legs. I cried all the way to the car to call my husband to get the phone number to call someone (Sheriff, Wildlife and Parks, etc.) to come put the dear down. It is bow season here, but from the looks of it she wasn’t injured by a careless hunter, but a careless driver. I think someone hit her on the highway and kept right on going. She wasn’t a full grown deer, merely a baby, and probably didn’t do a whole lot of damage to the vehicle to warrant double checking to see if the deer was okay. People make me sick. Maybe I’m wrong and the driver was not at fault for leaving an injured animal behind to suffer and die in the ditch. I hope I am. I hope people are not in such a hurry they can’t show any decency or kindness to an injured animal. I cried for the next 5-6 miles, wondering if the person on the other end of the telephone line would really do their part and call someone to take care of the deer. This is the second time in the four years I’ve made my morning commute I have had to call in for an injured deer along the side of the highway that someone else had left behind.
Life needs to slow down. Life needs to have meaning and purpose and compassion. I’ve always wanted to do something more with my life. I want to be a missionary, to help abused or abandoned animals, to change someone’s life by simple human kindness. This morning was just another reminder of how I want more out of life than the motions I’ve been going through. I don’t want to look back and wonder why I was even put on earth. I want to look back and know that I changed someone or something, that I made it better for them. I may never get to be a missionary in Africa, I may never get to save primates or their jungles, and I may never be able to save every abandoned dog or cat or child, but each day I can try to brighten someone else’s day by a simple smile, warm conversation with someone who’s lonely, or donate to even one organization I believe in.
I went to lunch with my grandma Tuesday at a little deli down the street from where I work. The minute we sat down a mentally handicapped man next to us began talking to us. At first I was kind of annoyed. Here we were trying to chat and have a nice lunch and this man kept asking us questions and telling us small stories. After a couple of minutes of being annoyed, I realized this may be his only conversation all day, all week, or even all month. I get to talk to people all the time (like it or not). Here this man, Hamilton, is starving for conversation, for someone to listen to him and respond to what he says. I realized it wouldn’t kill me. Not only would it not kill me, it would change me and it might possibly change him.
Have a wonderful day and take the time to show kindness to someone or something today.