Asking Questions II

Or… Practice What I Preach!

One of the wonderful mysteries of life is how both synergistic and coincidental it is. Of course, I would find this so as I believe that the quantum physicists are correct, everything is energy and, on this plane, Newton’s law of motion also applies to how energy moves. Namely, what we put out in thoughts, words, and actions comes back.

I also believe that our innate nature is to constantly better ourselves, hence that energy, whether we are trying to or not, is generating opportunities to learn and grow each day; we simply have to become more aware, stay more in the moment to discover most of those opportunities. Sometimes we recognize a growth occurrence as it unfolds or, as happened in this case, a failure in staying aware or present.

My last post was on asking questions and, it seems, that blog was also directed to me! Even though I know this and teach it, sometimes I am a student all over again. A yoga instructor that taught me likes to say, “To teach is to learn all over again!” Well, the universe gave me that chance yesterday.

We are in Anaheim celebrating my sister-in-law’s and her daughter’s birthdays, and we were enjoying their Disneyland birthday present. I went to the men’s room and, when leaving, saw a gentleman enter that was blind that had paused just inside the entrance. I asked him if he needed help, he accepted, and if he needed a urinal or toilet, and it was the former.

I guided him to a stall, showed him the partitions and said my goodbye. So, how is this like the last post since I did ask if he needed help? Thinking about it later, I realize that I had used what I consider incorrect terminology and that the most important question had been left out, “Can I be of further assistance?”

First, he did not need help. For me, help is when someone cannot do something, like lifting something too heavy for one person or helping a child with schoolwork they do not yet understand. This fellow was perfectly capable of finding the urinals, even if doing so in a strange bathroom may not have been easy. I should have asked if he needed assistance. Yes, I know it is a minor distinction and that a definition for help is to assist, but words have energy and there is that part of helping that indicates inability. And then I made an assumption.

I now know that I reasoned that having gotten him to a urinal, that was all that was needed; how about asking him rather than me supplying an answer, albeit unspoken. That is the error on my part; he does not know if the urinal is a manual or automatic flush model or, now, one of the waterless ones. From sounds, he might know where the lavatories are, but not the location of the soap and towel dispensers, which can also be manual or automatic. And how about the trashcan or easily finding his way back to the door and ensuring no child come barreling through the door and runs into him?

He may well have said that he could take it from that point, but I never gave him a chance. From the feel good I had of being of service, and I am not taking anything away from that, I could have been even more of service by asking a simple question. Even though I feel I do know this, I had a fabulous lesson and reminder that I need to be ever vigilant, ever aware. I used to think that being aware to that extent would be exhausting, but actually, it makes life both easier and more meaningful!

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