Today Sru and I went to grocery shopping at an Indian store in Dayton, Ohio.
As, we were getting our purchases billed, there was an elderly man in his early 60’s bagging the items we bought. The man seemed to be new at his job as he was struggling to put the items in the bags as fast as he could. I noticed the bag tear as this person put too many items it. However, he did not realize that the bag was torn and continued to hurriedly place items in it. I looked at Sru and asked her if I should help him bag the items or at least take an extra bag lest the items fall off from the bag. Sru, replied me back saying that it is okay.
On our way out of the store to the parking lot, Sru and I carefully carried our items in the torn bag. Though Sru and I did not much discuss about this incident, I know why she discouraged me from assisting the man bag the items or take an extra bag. She knew, we would manage getting the items to our car in a torn bag , as the parking lot was not too far away from the store. However, taking an extra bag or helping the man with bagging the items could have hurt his self-esteem.
Though this person did a clumsy job of bagging the purchases, he did a great job in giving me the opportunity to learn a lesson in empathy from Sru.
PS: To be empathetic, one must understand and not judge.