Before Johnny and I moved here we lived in Eugene, Oregon, in one of those beautiful apartment buildings for people over fifty-five. While there I'd take a walk around the grounds every day, mostly with Johnny, but often by myself. There was a lot going on in my life, some really hard, painful stuff, and I was getting discouraged, sad, fearful and was, too often, sitting on the pity pot, thinking about just throwing in the towel and giving up.
For about three weeks, while walking alone,
I'd see this elderly woman, probably about eighty or so.-(-lol It just occurred to me that in two years I'll be 80 ).
Any way, to continue...this dear lady was in a wheelchair and always looked very sad.
I'd always say hello to her. She
seldom answered, but once in awhile would nod her head, acknowledging
that she heard me.
One day, while walking by I saw that she was
crying, so didn't hesitate to go over to her. "What's the matter, dear?"
I asked, while sitting down beside her.
okay." she said, wiping her tears with her fingers. "Really." she added,
as she looked up at me. I could see that she wasn't okay, that she was
hurting really bad. I didn't want to pry but did want to help, so
silently asked God to show me what to do.
"You don't have to sit
with me." she said, suddenly, while twisting her handkerchief in her
hands. "There's nothing you can do anyway."
"I'd like to try."I
replied, "but can't help if I don't know the problem." She looked down,
began wiping her tears as they began to rain down her cheeks.
old." she said, the pain in her voice so deep it was all I could do to
keep from crying myself. " I"m old and wrinkled and of no use to
"Oh, but you are."I told her.
"No! I'm not!
That's why you always see me sitting here by myself. My family lives
right here in this town but never come to see me. They just dumped me
here and left."
God gave me the words to say to her. "I'll be
your family." I said, and hugged her before she could have a chance to
protest. "Would you like that?" Her frail arms returned my hug and she
broke down- cried so hard I began to cry with her. "Will you?" she asked
in a quivery voice? "Will you really be my family?
"I will." I said, and was.
was the beginning of a new chapter in her life- and mine. I walked with
her every day, sometimes Johnny went with us. I'd read her stories, and
Johnny and I took her for long rides and to dinner with us.
day, knowing she was missing her family more than usual, I wanted to
cheer her up, wanted to make her laugh. I went to the store and bought
two huge bottles of Bubbles and two bubble pipes. I wish you could have
seen the joy on her face when she opened the bag and saw that pipe and
jar of bubbles. "I remember these." she said, while opening the bottle.
"I used to spend hours blowing bubbles for my kids."
"Well now we can blow them for each other, can't we?" I said.
grew to love that sweet lady. It broke my heart when she died a few
months later. That experience with her taught me a big lesson; that all
of us can make a difference ...can put some SHINY moments in another
persons life if we are willing to try.
I have, since doing that
with that lady, bought many bottles of bubbles, always have some with me
in case I run across someone who is sad, lonely, lost, or in need of a
friend. I encourage you to do this for somebody, especially somebody
like this precious lady. Bubbles, most people think, are for children.
But that isn't true. Bubbles are also for adults willing to view and
experience once again, the world through a child's eyes. The best part
about trying this is that afterwards, you feel so good; feel good because you made a difference.Well,
I'm behind on chores so better get started. I hope every one of you
has an awesome day; that you're surrounded by people who love you,
believe in you, and take time to have some fun with you.
I shared this post again because I have discovered that there still aren't enough people reaching out to others. There are still far to many lonely, hurting, friendless people around us, oftentimes just across the street.
I share bottles of bubbles, magazines, and books. One of the things I love most to do is leave encouraging notes and little surprises for those who serve me: waitresses, cashiers, service station attendants, mail men, etc. The cost is little- the rewards enormous. A few dollars spent on magnets that say "Great job" "Thank you." "You're really great at what you do." "You really stand out." can have a lasting effect on another person's life.
Leaving a post it for a new waitress saying " Hang in there. Tomorrow will be better." Is a huge help too. Of the many surprises I leave I have the most fun with the bubbles. I think it is because we all miss those former years, when life was slower- the world a safer, more calmer place. Sitting with friends and blowing bubbles lets us be a kid again, reminds us that one is never to old to have fun..to enjoy life.
Have an awesome day. Do something for somebody else. And then...do a little something for yourself. YOU count too.