This is an account Mom wrote about a time she fell and the man who stopped to help her get up. It's a situation Mom sometimes found herself in and I sometimes find myself in.
In her story, Mom points out that the man stopped to listen to what help she needed, rather than assuming the best way to get her back up.
The photo is of Mom at a local science museum on a visit to see us in 2010.
As a handicapped individual, who is out in the world, I have benefited from many acts of kindness, by a variety of individuals. The latest happened just three months ago. I walk with crutches and full-length leg braces. I pulled my car into the parking lot behind LaJames College of Hairstyling. It was a beautiful day for the middle of February, after a very cold, snowy winter. I decided not to wear my coat, as it was only a short distance to the door. The sun had melted the snow on the sidewalk. I went on in to get my hair cut.
An hour later, I came out. It was now dark. Knowing that this section of sidewalk, which was wet earlier, would now be frozen, I slowed up walking when I saw the slick spot, but not soon enough. I fell face first on the slick cement. My bare hands scraped along the ice. I decided that I better get up before I was too cold to move. I could see no one around.
Suddenly a young black man came out of nowhere. "May I help you?" he said trying to grab me from behind.
"Wait, no!" I said, a little surprised.
"I won't hurt you," he said.
"No! Do what I tell you." He stopped to listen. "Now, hold your hands stiff so I can lean on them." I rolled over and used his hands to get up standing. He then picked up my crutches and my purse.
"Thanks," I said. "Now, if I can get to the car. It's parked right there."
"I can help you to the car," he replied.
"Now, just hold my hand steady and act like a railing," I requested. The young man did all these things exactly as I requested. After opening the car door, I got my things in and put my coat on. I thanked him very much. I got into the car. He kept asking me if I was OK. My finger was bleeding and I didn't want to get it all over, so I was moving carefully.
Suddenly, I looked up and he was gone. Just as quickly as he appeared. I couldn't see him on the sidewalk at all.
I sat in the car a minute trying to warm up and thinking about this kind gentleman. Most people try to grab me and try to actually pick me up, not listening to what I really need.
I thought about him all the way home; and wished I could have been able to thank him better. I don't even know who he is.