Glass half empty or glass half full? It’s a question that shows how the same thing can be viewed two entirely different ways—the negative or the positive. How we see something determines everything. It’s all about perspective.
If you walk into an assisted living home for the elderly, you might see this:
• An empty piano alongside a blaring TV with a row of wheelchairs in front of the latter, with the occupants of said chairs ranging from sleeping to zoned-out watching.
• A drooling old man, wearing an oversized bib, sitting alone, slumped against a table.
• A crippled, toothless person sitting alone in a room staring out the door to an empty hallway.
• An elderly lady who refuses to leave her dark room for breakfast.
And if you see that, you might just support euthanasia.
But I’d like to tell you what I see:
• I see people to give the gift of music to, entertaining them by a person playing the piano.
• I see an elderly lady who can be given an opportunity to come alive with music, giving her a chance to joyfully reminisce about her days when she attended musicals. I see that lady not just standing, but dancing to the beat, swinging her arms, and singing along.
• I see an opportunity to wipe the face of someone who, decades before, wiped the faces of many other souls.
• I see a chance to slide open curtains and share the sunshine with a lady who didn’t know it was there.
• I see someone with ears to speak to.
• I see lips to be provoked into a smile.
• I see sweet ladies to listen to and laugh with.
• I see a fragile, soft hand to hold and give the gift of touch to.
• I see people in wheelchairs to push into the brilliance and beauty of the outdoors.
And if you see that, you might just thank these people for being. You might just realize their existence is enough to warrant our attention. You might just realize
we have something to give,
something to learn,
and most importantly, someone to love.
Indeed, how we see something—especially someone—determines everything.