“When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, ‘Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.’ To this day, especially in times of ‘disaster,’ I remember my mother’s words, and I am always comforted by realizing that there are still so many helpers … so many caring people in this world.” – Mister Rogers
One of my heroes is Fred Rogers (also know as Mr. Rogers on his children’s television show. It wasn’t that he was a celebrity. They are a dime a dozen in today’s world. I probably only watched a total of 15-30 minutes combined of all of his episodes as I was channel surfing. I knew very little of him when his show was on. From his television persona I thought he probably was a gentle man, but perhaps a little weird.
A few years ago my middle son sent an audiobook to me that he had just read about Mr. Rogers with a strong recommendation to listen to it. I thought I’d be bored based on the subject matter but gave it a try.
Instead, I became fascinated by the man, his kindness, compassion, goodness, and his vision and mission regarding communicating with children in ways that help them to deal with their fears, questions, insecurities, curiosity, etc. He spoke to them as a trusted friend. He didn’t care how many adults made fun of him. He was even made fun of on Saturday Night Live. That didn’t matter to him. The children of the world did. He loved them and they loved him.
I more recently learned that he came out of retirement shortly after September 11, 2001 happened and made a special show to talk to the children and help them work through what they had heard and what they were feeling about the events and reactions of that tragic and fateful day.
I wish he was here to do the same after recent tragedies.
I didn’t know him, but I miss his presence in our world. I would have liked to have been his friend and would have been proud to have called him a friend of mine.
We sure do need someone like that to talk to the kids about what happened. I am not a parent, and I am not sure how I would even broach the subject. He was a kind and gentle soul.
Thank you for your comment. I agree, and am unaware of anyone who has taken his place as that kind of role model on TV.
I wouldn’t even know how to broach that in the US. I have discussed it with mine but was able to say it wouldn’t happen here because people don’t have guns. It is just so heartbreaking that our children even have to process this kind of nightmare. Jen
Heartbreaking indeed. Thank you for your comment, Jen. It is good to hear from you.
Mr. Rogers was so gentle. Very special man.
I agree on both counts. Thank you for taking the time to read and comment. I’ve promised myself the pleasure of visting your blog again, and plan to do so relatively soon. When I visit, I plan to stay for awhile because I have a lot of catching up to do.
My children watched Mr Rogers and his quiet demeanor I think really appealed to them and to me…Diane
Thank you for your feedback, Diane.
Beautiful post Russ. Thank you for sharing your own gentle wisdom and kindness through your blog here. May all our hearts find comfort. Blessings to you dear friend, Gina
Thank you for your kind compliment, my dear friend. It is always wonderful to hear from you. May all our hearts find comfort, indeed. And ways to make a positive difference in the world.
This is beautiful, how one person can make such a difference in the world by caring so much. I’m doing catching up on your blog, as you can see Russ. Thanks for this post. I reminded me of the importance of deep caring. I too believe, we need it more than ever in this world.
Thank you for your comment and frendship, Kristi. May the new year bring much joy and good health to you and your family.