Just What Is Respect:

It’s a Good Way to Be – and a Way to Be Good

7.21.2019 Barbara Cegavske

Barbara Cegavske brings us a message about R-E-S-P-E-C-T (with the help of the Queen of Soul, Aretha Franklin). Sharing some excerpts from the children’s book Dare to Care, Share, and Be Fair!  by Ted O’Neal, R. W. Alley, and Jenny O’Neal, she gave us a wonderful reminder about what respect is and ways in which we can show it. She said respect is “a good way to be and a way to be good.” Like water in the desert, we wish there was more of it, she opined, and a virtue we should teach our children early. It is a way to care about ourselves and others, going hand-in-hand with the Golden Rule, and helps us to treat people with love, kindness, and appreciation. Magic words that will take us all far in life like please, thank you, excuse me, I’m sorry, good morning, good night, and just a simple “hello” are always welcome whether we are young or old. We need to be careful to use words that heal, and not hurt others, remember that all people have value, and that a smile can make someone’s day. Showing respect is not always fun or easy, but it becomes easier when we make it a habit, doing it every day. Barbara also shared some insights from medical students who had visited the Betty Ford Clinic and interacted with patients dealing with addiction who learned to see not just the addiction, but the people behind their illnesses who exhibited resilience through their pain. The students began to see themselves and their own emotions in the patients, and began to really listen to the people’s stories. Barbara’s father always reminded her to “walk a mile in someone else’s shoes” to learn about them and try to understand how they feel. She reminded us to learn to accept people just as they are. She left us with the thought, “Respect is another word for love, and love is the bridge between you and everything.”