An elderly gentleman in my neighborhood stopped to chat on his early morning walk one recent morning. I don’t usually see him at that time of day because I’m usually still in the sack. The reason for my being up that day was a bulging disc complicated by some serious arthritis in my lower back and the resulting pain had been waking me up well before daybreak. So, when David mentioned that he noticed the sun had come up again, I glanced toward the gorgeously tinted eastern sky and thought, but of course it came up. It always comes up.
It comes up whether the sky is clear and we can see the resulting glory of its rising or not. It comes up even if our heads are still buried in our pillows like mine usually is. Of course it came up. Then it occurred to me that what David was saying was that it came up again for him. None of us are getting any younger and every new day is a gift. Such a huge and wonderful blessing and how easily overlooked. We chatted for a while longer before he went on his way and I turned to come back into my house to fix some breakfast. But somehow, that comment started a ball rolling for me.
For the rest of the day I noticed blessings in places I far too often overlooked, especially during the last two weeks of pain and sleepless nights. There were other neighbors also up earlier than my usual and they all called out a cheerful good morning as they passed. What blessing. I have wonderful neighbors. I fixed my bowl of cereal and carried it out to the deck to eat while I read the paper. But instead of reading the paper with it’s discouraging list of world problems and local mayhem, I watched the sea turn from the early morning pearl to bright blue as the sun rose higher in the sky. What a blessing to live here where I get to see this every day if I so choose.
As the day progressed there were more blessings. I have other neighbors who stopped long enough to say Hi and a dog who refuses to let me miss any such opportunity for socializing. I’ve a UPS driver who knows Duff by name and always calls out to him as he passes. Although that day he stopped to deliver a package. He called to Duff and told him to go get his toy, which Duff did, then he threw it for Duff to chase. Then he gave me my package, which turned out to be my box of author copies of my just released new book. I opened them right there while the UPS driver played with the dog and I showed him my book and gave him the elevator speech. Turns out his daughter served in the Army, in Iraq, and dealt with many of the same issues my heroine had. What a blessing to share that moment with this man who I know only by his smiling face and his job as my UPS driver.
There is a family of siblings whose mom used to live just down the street. They come from all over and even though she is gone, they still come to visit this wonderful little island. I wrote before in my blog about their habit of strolling down the road to the edge of the ocean to say goodnight, and it’s just as cheerful a sight today as it was then. Another blessing to my day to hear their loving, spirited chatter as they share those special moments together.
I got emails and FB messages from several friends who were checking in on me to see how my back was. Friends are a blessing and that they took time out of their day to think of me another blessing. I wasn’t so happy with the agent at my insurance company who blithely reminded me that there is generally a 5-business-day turn-around time on authorization for treatment. Didn’t she understand that I was in pain? But perhaps she did. She put me on hold while she took the time to check the status of my request and discover it had been processed. She advised me to have the doctor’s office call later for the approval. It was a blessing that she didn’t hold my pain-induced snippiness against me and that she took the time to check on it. It’s a blessing I have insurance in the first place, although that’s another thing I tend to overlook far too often. Along with a roof over my head and food in my fridge, a safe place to sleep at night and freedoms beyond the imagination of much of the world.
My son called me that evening to check up on me, too, and his wife did so via our family chat. They remembered me in the midst of their own crisis. Her father died unexpectedly and they had to travel a thousand miles away to deal with the crisis leaving their three kids at home because Noel’s mom is wheelchair-bound and was very dependent on Noel’s Dad. I should have been able to fly up and help out, but due to my back was unable to and it frustrated me no end. But even without me, Alex had back-up. His brother gave up his long weekend at the summer place to stay at the house and care for the kids along with his wife and daughters. My sister came down that first night the children would be on their own after the nanny left. My oldest daughter drove down to care for them at night the following week. The nanny, God bless her, kept life on schedule, marking important things like Natalie's first day of school. My middle daughter’s husband flew down in mid-week to help with the packing up of two lives because Noel’s mom couldn’t stay there on her own. He also drove the motorcycle all the way from Tennessee to Maryland and with plans to sell it for my son and daughter-in-law (it was just one of so many things they were dealing with and Joe opted to take that off their plate.)
In fact, as I thought about it, when Alex and Noel had to fly out to Tennessee with no forewarning and for such a difficult task, all their siblings pulled together. When I think of what a wonderful bunch of kids I have, I am humbled. They are truly the biggest blessings of my whole life.
Here's my biggest blessing a few years back They've grown in number too many to count
Bobbi, Jeff, Alex, Rebecca & Lori (in front) My kids, their husbands and wives, my grandkids, their
sweethearts, and so many more...
So, yes, the sun did come up that morning. And I was there to see it.