Saturday, August 28, 2010

Attitude is Everything

David Kiefer aka Ol' Buddy Dave
I love to be inspired by other people's lives and attitudes towards their trials.  I've seen this video posted on facebook several times and it still touches me when I watch it.  We all are faced with some kind of imperfection in our bodies that can either consume us with self-pity or teach us strength and tolerance. Even those who seem to be the most perfect people in either appearance or life story have their own challenges to overcome.  We sometimes put ourselves in a "me pity party" as if no one else has ever had to face things as rough as we do but when you see videos such as this one, it always makes me feel ashamed for ever complaining about any trivial flaw in my own life.  I'm so very impressed with the attitude of this man.   He is making the most of what he has been given in life and not wasting his time with feeling sorry for himself for what he doesn't have.  I love it.  I'm putting it here so that I can find it again the next time I feel a little worthless.  This video will kick me in the bum everytime.  I had a friend that I met in college with whom I spent quite a bit of time with in my single years.  His name was Dave and he had lost a leg in a motorcycle accident at about 18 years old.  He chose not to use a prosthesis because it limited him too much so he used crutches to get around and hopped the rest of the time.  He made it a point to put people at ease with his handicap upon meeting them.  I remember introducing him to a friend I worked with who was skiing.  We had stopped by the local ski resort to buy his lift tickets and I had tagged along.  As we came out of the lodge we saw my co-worker Julie who had just come down the run and I introduced her to Dave.  He looked at her and asked her if she ever had problems with her skiis crossing over.  She said, "yes, all the time".   He just smiled and said...."I don't".  She told me later that she didn't know how to respond to that but from that time forward she never felt uncomfortable joking with him about his handicap.  Another time we were traveling home from college and he would stop at every IHOP restaurant we passed and go in and ask if they had a tee shirt with the restaurant label on it.  Finally one waitress got bold and asked him why he wanted one of their tee shirts so badly.  He just flipped his one leg up while balancing on his crutches and said "Because I Hop."  Once again, he stunned her and left her with no reply.  I learned a lot from my dear friend, Dave.  You have two choices when life hits you with something can let it defeat you, or you can face it head on and let it strengthen you to be a better person.  I'm thankful for people like Dave and Nick who inspire me to find my strengths and focus on those rather than my weaknesses.

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