The reading from the Impossible really touched home with me because it opened up with a woman talking about her own paralysis and how debilitating it can be. Before my father suffered a stroke in the fall of freshman year that left him paralyzed on the right side of his body, I never would have been able to relate to that reading in the way that I have. Before my dad’s paralysis, he was an incredibly mobile man. This was a man who drove around all day for work and would come back at 6 pm to play basketball with his kids. He was the one taught me how to dribble a basketball and got me hooked on sports. Thus, I think that you can understand the frustration that he now feels on a daily basis when he needs help to perform daily tasks that were once automatic for him.
I have noticed this idea that there is an ability for all different people to make a change that can have a major impact on another individual’s life in a different light as my family continues to journey through my dad’s disability. There are some amazing people who go out of their way to do what we may deem “little things” for my dad, but they make his day a thousand times better. He can no longer just drive aimlessly like he used to, but when someone comes to take him on a drive to the beach on a bad day, it can change his entire mood. We may have forgotten the amount of impact that these actions can have on a person, but I can tell you that it means the world to people like my dad.
Little changes really do matter. I can attest to this as I have seen people make dinners for my family when we were going back and forth between the hospital and just did not have a spare moment to cook. I have seen it when my dad finally got his license this year and drove for the first time in over a year. I have seen it on my mom’s face when one of my middle school teachers sent in gift cards this Christmas to help her out with our Christmas shopping. As one of idols John Wooden once said, “It’s the little details that are vital. Little things make big things happen.”