Monday, January 19, 2015
My word of the year, ribbistrate, gives me an invitation to explore it's deeper meaning. Since I made up the etymology of the word I feel I can play with the definition. If ribbies are hits that bring in runs in baseball and strate means to show, then ribbistrate could mean "to show joy in others accomplishments". I would like to be more aware of the good things others do.
At the temple Saturday I was sitting behind a tiny women with a turban. She seemed to me to be a cancer patient. At some point during the session a sister, on the right, a stranger, noticed she was not responding any more. I watched this very compassionate sister take her pulse and talk her her gently as she assessed her needs. I heard her say over and over again, "you are going to be all right." Minutes later the husband of the afflicted sister came over and tried to get her to respond. She was so weak she could hardly answer. They helped her into a wheelchair and took her out to receive help. The session reconvened and I noticed the helping sister weeping silently. I felt the high energy in meeting this crisis overcome her. I gave her a little squeeze. Later I saw her before I left. I wanted to tell her what a great job she did to respond so quickly and compassionately. She told me a funny story. She and her husband had been late. They arrived as the group was going in. For some reason she felt compelled to cut in line and go in front of many others. Her husband stayed back irritated at what she did. That action brought her to the side of this little lady. Still weeping she told me what she had learned that day. If a woman with cancer could get the gumption to attend the temple why was she making excuses so often when it came time to go. I wanted to let her know she was in the right place at the right time. I wanted to ribbistrate for her bravery.