Thank You.

Have you said thank you yet today? I bring this up because I’ve noticed a lot of people forget to thank the people that help them. I can’t tell you how many times especially with restaurants that people look at me with complete surprise when I say thanks. What does that mean as a society? Are we just not teaching our kids to be thankful anymore?

As a lifeguard my job consists of getting yelled at daily for upholding the rules. Yes, I get yelled at for doing my job. That’s how you know you’re doing a good job. You see people (especially adults) don’t really like someone younger than them telling them what do. Except it’s kind of my job to tell them the rules and NO DIVING. Excuse me for enforcing rules I didn’t come up with for your protection.

It just doesn’t make any sense. Would you yell at a police officer for getting a speeding ticket? It’s not his fault you decided to speed. Matter of fact, he didn’t even decide the speed of the road in the first place! His job is just enforcing the law to keep us safe. So, let me ask you this: If your child is running and I ask them to walk please, in what world does it make sense to yell at ME?

Sorry, back on topic. One day was a super busy day at the pool. There was a whopping 260 people in the pool area if I remember correctly. It was our yearly summer kick off bash and the most stressful night of the year. A woman along with her young daughter go into the pool area. Now the rule is if your child is under five years old it’s unsafe for them to go into the spa. The water is too warm for young children and their bodies can’t quite handle the heat yet. You’re putting your child at risk of heat exhaustion and possibly drowning.

So, they go in and I follow them in and ask her mother for her age. She replies saying her child is five years old. All it took is one glance to know that her child wasn’t five years old. You see the problem is with children so young you really have no proof of age. At least when kids start school they usually get a school ID. So, her daughter continues into the spa and her mother starts ranting about the lifeguards and how we’re overly forcing the rules.

I tried to explain why we don’t let children under five into the spa but she just wouldn’t have it. She’d just kept on scolding me for trying to keep her daughter from having fun. What did I do to deserve this scolding? I was just trying to protect her daughter from getting sick and possible heat exhaustion. Somewhere in-between her scolding I yelled loud enough to overpower her voice “YOU’RE COOKING YOUR CHILD ALIVE”.

She immediately screamed and ran to pull her child out of the hot tub. After the mother pulled her child out she walked back up to me and thanked me. She apologized for being rude to me and told me her daughter was only three years old. Her daughter was already complaining after only being in for no more than 2-4 minutes that she wasn’t feeling good and was tired.

While what I said was very drastic I’m just glad I could get the little girl out. Who knows what would have happened if she’d stayed in any longer. The thing that really hit me though was when she apologized and thanked me. This person who had previously been scolding me turned around and thanked me.

That meant a lot to me that she was thankful and apologized to me. I may get yelled at a lot but knowing that I make sure everyone is safe is worth it. Being thankful and giving thanks makes both parties feel better about whatever situation you’re in. Whether you’re thanking your mom for that ugly shirt she got you or a friend spotting you cash while out for dinner. I’d also like to take the moment to personally thank my father, great grandfather, veteran, and police officer whose served this great country.

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