June 24, 2024
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June 24, 2024
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Linking Northern and Central NJ, Bronx, Manhattan, Westchester and CT

A Few Words Can Make a Great Difference

Mordechai and I have shared and feel the love and devotion of our children constantly. Our daughter Malkie arrived on the scene yesterday as she drove in from Rochester to boost the morale of her parents (her mother mainly). How she was able to arrange the most magnificent weather that we have experienced in weeks we have yet to figure out. We decided to take a drive to the beach. The foliage along the Garden State Parkway, with the sun shining down on golden red trees, was more than breathtaking and definitely uplifting. The sparkle of the ocean and the sun shining down on us as we walked and sat could not do anything but uplift a person’s mental state.

Lo and behold, there was another spark of total joy that probably meant more than anything else to me. Sitting at a table outside of a vegan restaurant in Long Branch, a lady exiting the area looked at me once and then again and exclaimed that I looked very familiar. She was quite sure that she knew me from somewhere, which I doubted. She asked my name and as soon as she heard it she began to yell, “Oh my gosh, I read your articles each week. You didn’t write last week. You are my favorite.” She was a lady who I had never met before by the name of Sharon Atlas.

Sharon, as you read this, I want you to know that you made my day. I had just had a discussion with my daughter about how difficult it is to start over in a community after you have lived the majority of your life somewhere else. I told her that I really know very few people, and then you came along and spoiled my entire sob story! Thank you, Sharon.

Little things, a few words that we do not even realize can make such a difference in giving a person support, are so vital for all of us to remember to give to each other.

After our lunch and more walking, we somehow made our way to the Coney Waffle in Long Branch. As we were salivating over our choices, one more delicious than the other, I decided to go back into the store to tell the owner how absolutely “delish” the ice cream was. He was so excited that I had done that. He thanked me profusely and I realized that what I had done had taken less than 10 seconds, and such a tiny act had the ability to make someone so happy.

Yes, it is so easy to make someone feel good. I have no way of knowing whether or not he had been having a good or mediocre day, but I do know that my little act helped boost his mood.

Words can be so hateful and on the other hand so invigorating. As an avid reader of comments on different Facebook sites, I find it appalling that there are so many critical people out there. Aside from the judgmental attitude of anyone and everyone on subjects from how people are handling themselves during this pandemic; to the outrageous comments about restaurants, their food and their service; to the critique of medical professionals; to the abominable discourse on the rabbanim in our communities, I often think that there has to be a better way for us to direct our thoughts and comments to people directly instead of publicly writing them on websites and in newspapers. So much stress is out there in the world today, and yet so many find it necessary to verbally assault well-meaning people who are struggling to maintain businesses and their livelihoods. As my father always said: “If you do not have something good to say about someone, don’t say anything.”

My suggestion for the coming week is that we should all pay a compliment to anyone we happen to be with or near. Tell the cashier how much you like her eyes, thank the mailman for his great service, wish your neighbor to whom you rarely speak a great day and, perhaps most difficult, tell someone with whom you are close who might have done something that you did not agree with how grateful you are to have them in your life.


Nina Glick lives in Bergenfield with her husband, Rabbi Mordechai Glick, after many years of service to the Montreal Jewish community. Nina coordinated all Yachad activities in Montreal and was a co/founder of Maison Shalom, a group home for special needs young adults. She can be reached at [email protected].

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