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Carol Perkins: The real MVP's of the world

MVP's are really the folks who come through in everyday life - when they are needed.
Carol Perkins: Legacies of Tim Best, Anna Beth Branstetter

The Most Valuable Player of a game is presented a trophy, has his/her picture in the paper, and is smothered with congratulations from family, friends, and peers. I have never been a MVP. No trophies of mine are gathering dust on the back of dark shelves in the basement (where I recently found trophies belonging to our children from years ago.) Girls did not play sports in the 60's and if they had, I wouldn't have been on a team. Although not the least bit athletic, I did have a loud mouth for yelling "Get that tip and let'er rip."

In thinking about MVP's one afternoon on my way somewhere, I thought about the Most Valuable Players in our lives rather than in a game of sports. The natural response would be our husband or wife, our children and family; however, the MVP in our daily lives actually just depends. You know what Just Depends means.

When I am frustrated, on edge, or bogged down with too many responsibilities or worries, I have many people to whom I can turn, but I most often call one of two people. On the other end I will find comfort, support, and maybe even advice. Some days I am the one getting the phone call from them. We don't have blood sisters, so we have become the sisters we never had. Even though I value the other players in my circle immensely, these have been my lifelong MVP's.

If I have car trouble, the MVP is the person who says, "Miss Carol, just bring it and leave it with me." If my computer is giving me fits, I call a young man who will help me and refuse to take any money. "I'll take one of those yellow hats," he'll say. If I need something built, I call on my cousin who just rolls his eyes and helps me when Guy doesn't have time to do. (My cousin is retired.) I have MVP's who say, "If you need me to run errands for you, just give me a call."

Other most valuable players are those who take care of us when we can't take care of ourselves. The person who says, "We're going to the emergency room," when chest pains won't go away or the person who drives a cancer patient to a treatment center when she has no one to take her. It could be the day care worker who is kind and loving to your child when you leave him at the door and won't see him again for eight hours. There are so many MVP's in my life.

This week my brother had shoulder surgery at Jewish Hospital. In a span of six hours, he was in the hands of many valuable players. The first MVP was the anesthesiologist. Tom would control the amount of medicine "knocking" my brother out, so he would be under long enough, but not too long. None of us want just any Tom, Dick or Harry turning the lever too much to the right or left.

The next MVP was the surgeon. This surgery was to "fix" what another doctor had messed up at another hospital, so this time my brother wanted the reassurance this man knew what he was doing by listening to him explain each step. All those in whose hands we place ourselves and relinquish our control are the most valuable persons in our lives-for that moment-and then we move ahead, often forgetting their names and faces.

Shakespeare words from "As You Like It" really say what I am trying to say, but much better.
All the world's a stage,
And all the men and women merely players:
They have their exits and their entrances;
And one man in his time plays many parts.
What part do you play in the lives of others? Are you a MVP to anyone? Of course you are. You are mother, father, sister, brother, aunt, uncle, grandmother, grandfather, teacher, coach, doctor, nurse, bus driver, store clerk, cook at school, judge, taxi driver, banker, minister...

There may be no trophies and no banquets to honor these MVP's, but kind words of thanks mean much more and don't take up space on shelves in the dark corner of a basement. - Carol Perkins d

This story was posted on 2013-03-24 08:29:05
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