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  • It was a valiant attempt, a miscalculation, ultimately a failure.

    When I first saw her, she was driving the motorized shopping cart up to her car. I wondered at first why this young, bouncy woman was riding the cart. But then I saw. There was a passenger in her car, someone who needed the cart.

    The problem quickly became apparent though. The passenger, a grandmother or perhaps a mother, had no strength in her lower body. She worked for a while, trying to just get her legs out of the car. Eventually the young lady helped her.

    Then came attempts by the older lady to pull herself onto the cart. Unsuccessful attempts. And finally, there were the attempts by the young woman to lift her charge from the car seat. And this was where the real trouble began.

    She could only partially lift her, resulting in neither being able to get her to the scooter nor being able to get her back in the car. But the sudden appearance of a kind stranger demonstrated once again that two are better than one, and working together they placed the older woman into the car seat.

    The young woman began crying, frustration I suspect, embarrassment probably. And a woman who had also come to help comforted her, patting her shoulder, giving words of encouragement.

    A few minutes later, the young woman got into the car herself, and they drove away. And I was encouraged by the kindness of strangers in a grocery store parking lot. And I was also full of empathy for the young caregiver, having known similar failures in my own caregiving duties.
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