The Power of a Hearty, “Good Morning!”

How a stranger’s camaraderie set the tone for the day

Elizabeth Eve

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Photo by Kevin Butz on Unsplash

Yesterday I had an early morning follow-up appointment for my broken leg. It was a bitter winter morning, and I was dragging as I wriggled into the passenger seat with my non-bending leg extended and butt shifting around in search of a comfortable position. I laughed to myself as I thought about how I must have looked like my dog, who insists on vigorously pawing her blanket — repositing it at least four times — before sinking into a comfortable spot.

Warming my cold hands, I hugged the paper cup filled with hot coffee and, knowing I’d have to part with it once we arrived, sipped quickly. The caffeine only intensified my excitement which would soon turn to border anxiety. Hoping some of my restrictions would be lifted, I had waited for this day with the anticipation of a child counting the days until Christmas.

Hair blowing in the ice-cold wind (wishing I had brought a ponytail holder and appropriate coat), I crutched through the parking lot, stepped onto the building’s sidewalk triggering the automatic door to open, and hopped inside. I love to walk with crutches. Every day I crutch along the streets and cul-de-sacs of my neighborhood, envisioning myself training to compete in some sort of crutch Olympics.

I waited at the elevator — defrosting — when I heard the long-awaited beep as the creeky doors opened to a cheery woman already inside. In an exuberant voice, she greeted me with a hearty, “Good Morning!” as I stumbled in.

Her joviality permeated over me, slowing my racing mind. Yes, it is a Good Morning, I thought as the start of a brand new day filled with promise lies ahead. Reminded that it costs nothing to be a source of light in someone’s day, I made an internal note to be that person the next chance I had, and from there on out.

As I exited the elevator and checked in at the desk, only a few patients were in the waiting area. I found myself eavesdropping on an older man and young woman sitting two rows across and directly facing me.

The man — dressed in mustard-colored velvety pants, a worn black sweatshirt with a visible white t-shirt underneath, a light coat, and a shedding knit Baltimore Orioles hat— sat…

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Elizabeth Eve

Forever a work in progress. Writing about pets, body image, self, and other reflections. Always written with vulnerability and authenticity.