My little helper
While I was working tonight, I had the unfortunate task of disposing of all of the garbage from the various trash cans littered about the restaurant (McDonald's).
Normally, that job is boring and takes forever -- it gives me plenty of time to start feeling like I'm on the lowest rung of the employed-persons ladder. I drag a big, smelly, blue bin around on wheels, and throw huge, even smellier trash bags into it; not exactly career-material labor.
Tonight, my menial task was interrupted rather suddenly when a young boy (I'd say about 4-5 years old) skipped over to me in the playplace (you know, that area with the wacky tubes and such). He promptly greeted me kindly, and asked me what I was doing. I explained the job, expecting him to lose interest and dash off when I finished; instead, he walked right on over and tried to hold a door for me, when he saw me struggling to fit the bin through it while holding it open by myself.
I was surprised, and more than a little heartwarmed by his attempt to help; it was cute. After I thanked him and took a load of garbage to the back of the store and returned for more, I found that he was waiting for me at the door. He started to tell me about his trip to Kennywood with "mommy" earlier that day, then took a moment to ask me if I needed more help; after I assured him that I would be fine, and thanking him again, he continued, and went on to tell me that he was waiting for "mommy" to bring back some ice cream for him. For those of you that don't know, I absolutely LOVE ice cream -- so that was one feeling that I could relate to, at least in some small way. He kept on chattering for a few more minutes, following me from trash can to trash can as I went about my business, until at last his mother returned and I left to finish collecting garbage elsewhere.
Anyways, the point is, this encounter really made my day brighter, something I desperately needed; it got me thinking, too. Though my job is not exactly one that I would ever want to stick with for the rest of my life, and I get paid very little money, it still has its high points -- and I get paid in little ways that others don't. I tend to complain about my job sometimes, but when it comes right down to it, it has given me some memories that are worth much more than the money I would have made at a higher-paying job by now.
It's been a rough week for me, and I've been feeling pretty worthless; but this incident really made me feel human again. It was reassuring, to know that I could connect with a kind soul, even if it was only for a few minutes.
So wherever you are, my little helper, thanks again for lifting my spirits, making me realize how the most humble jobs can be the most rewarding, and sharing my passion for cold treats. You reminded me that sometimes the biggest help comes from the smallest people.