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FROM THE EDITOR'S PEN  / The Difference Is You /  Editorial List

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The Difference Is You

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As the height of the holiday season rapidly approaches, I start to think about one of my all-time favorite holiday movies ďItís a Wonderful Life.Ē  The filmís protagonist George, played to perfection by Jimmy Stewart, is disheartened about how his life had turned out and certain in the knowledge that it would make no big difference if he had never been born.  Clarence, the Angel who is seeking his wings, grants George his wish and, presto, George was never born.  The moral, of course, is that George actually touched so many people in his life that without him, the world would be a lesser place. His existence, no matter how useless he thought it was, made a positive difference to a wide array of folks.

My point is that every time I see this movie, I think of you. Even if I donít know you personally, I do know that your existence, your heart and soul have such a profound effect on so many more people than just the loved one for whom you care.

I sometimes tell the story about some folks whose idea of caregiving was to swoop into town once a year, drive our mutual loved ones up to a fast food window and then, just as fast as the food disappeared, so did they. It never surprised me when they would have telephonic conversations with my mom, casually explaining to her how little effort there was to this caregiving thing and asking why was she was so concerned and working so hard.

I would respond to these chats with Mom by explaining that there would be a great lump of coal waiting for them in their psychic stockings if they did not change their ways. Furthermore, it was easy to foretell (just as Ebenezer Scrooge was warned by the Ghost of Christmas Future) exactly how their kids would be caring for them, if that time ever came.



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