Are You Always Happy?


4:51a.m  “Why didn’t my alarm go off yet?” I wonder as I notice it’s one minute past the time I usually set my alarm for the morning when I work.

After a quick glance at my phone to be sure an alarm was set I remembered that I had granted myself 10 more minutes of extra sleep after being out late last night. I thought I’d appreciate those precious minutes of  sleep! So much for that!

Knowing we’d be short-staffed today I was mentally preparing myself to work alone or mostly alone for the shift.

This morning I just prayed for strength to face the day and that things would go well.

I grabbed my coffee, purse and lunch and walked the short distance from my car to the facility. I didn’t know what the next 8.5 hours would hold but I knew there’s nothing as wonderful as experiencing a calmness only God can give in the midst of the craziest hour.

It did appear slightly overwhelming when I considered the 11 residents I’d have to get ready for the day plus one shower to do all before 8 but I was also sure an aide from the other side would give me a hand. With another sip of coffee I was ready .

I had help for most of the morning and things went well. After things quieted down a bit after breakfast I was kept busy with charting, answering call lights, and getting the last two people ready for the day . It was a comfortable busy; not  crazy or overwhelming. Just busy.

” I like your outfit!”

His passing comment in the hallway caught me off guard. You see,this man rarely speaks, seemingly indifferent to what goes on around him, and here he complimented me on my outfit!

” Well, thank you!” I replied with a (big) smile as I paused for a moment giving him my attention. A slight smile played at his lips and as he shuffled past I noticed his clear blue eyes. He made my day with that simple compliment. It was like a gift from God. And those eyes? I think they might say more than his words.

That would have been enough but as I was nearing the end of my shift I was surprised by a comment from another resident.

“You have such dancing brown eyes,” the small wrinkled woman before me said with a sweet almost toothless smile as I entered her room.

 “Where did that come from?!” I wondered. 

After refusing the help I offered her, we had a very nice visit instead. This kind of thing rarely happens with this dementia resident and I felt that being granted the privilege to visit with her was a wonderful gift.

A few minutes later after she learned a little about my family  I returned to her room with her chocolate milk and  more prepared for the unexpected.

” You have such a nice smile! Are you always happy?” were the words that greeted me this time.

Am I always happy? I was challenged by that question. No, I’m not always happy but what is it then that robs my happiness at times?

The moral to all this is to….

Compliment freely

Be kind!

Learn from people!

And smile! It doesn’t go unfelt or unnoticed by the recipient.

Also, look for God in the little things of your day!


photo of woman standing in front of mirror

Photo by Luizmedeirosph on


Today I learned that when we allow “inconveniences ” we can more fully appreciate and witness the little ways God shows his care and works in our days.


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