Two weeks ago, while I was waiting at a crossroad, a thief broke my window and stole my bag. I was completely disoriented after that, and it took me some minutes to get my thoughts together. As I parked my car on the sideline and waited for the cops to arrive, a fireman not on duty stopped and asked me if I was OK. He offered me to stay by my side until the cops arrived. He didn’t say many things, except that he was robbed too, at the same place two months ago. They took his bag where he had his IPad and other documents. He told me that I shouldn’t feel guilty about this, that it happened, and that I couldn’t have done anything to avoid this. During the time he stood by my side, I felt protected. And when the police arrived, he went away. I thanked him, but I didn’t thank him enough at my taste. And I forgot to ask him his name, and his phone number. When I spoke to the police, this is where I felt shaken by the robbery.
Hadn’t he done this, maybe I would have felt much worse after that. Everytime I think about this robbery, I think about him. This does wonder to my mood. I just regret to have forgotten about asking his name and his number.
In situation like these, it’s often difficult to find the words to comfort the person who was in trouble. But there are many ways to show your empathy to this person. Empathy in itself has a huge power of healing people.
This night, I also gained a friend. Not the fireman, unfortunately. I would have love to know him a little bit better. I know it’s silly, but I hope our paths will cross again. The friend I gained is one of my colleagues. I mentioned on FB I was robbed, and she invited me to see an exhibition the next day to forget about this. We were not that close before. She’s the only one who reacted differently than the others. All of the other people just left a comment saying they were sorry. Only my sister and my mother reacted the same way.
But I’m not mad at my friends. A friend of mine was at the hospital that night with his daughter. As for the others, well, I didn’t expect anything more from them.
I read recently this. When it happens, a simple smile or a tissue would do the trick.
Empathy makes us human. Life without it would be very very sad.