Monday, August 26, 2013
There was a time in my life when I was quiet.
It was a brief and unremembered time of my youth, but I am told by those who knew me all those years ago it is true. In fact, I have been loud for so long I believe it has actually reversed the years I spent hiding behind my grandmother when company would come over.
Over the course of my life I have come to appreciate and understand the power of spoken words. The combination of words, inflection and the moment they are sent out into the surrounding air all combine to form a single event that can pass by swiftly or change the course of your life forever.
Words are powerful, folks.
I have always believed words and our ability to communicate with them are the most powerful resource human-beings possess... I believed this until last Tuesday.
I was having a bad day. I cannot pinpoint what triggered it, but it was an emotional day for me.
It could have been anything:
My busy life.
The childrens starting school again.
Work crossing the vague (yet sacred) line between work and home.
Not enough time with my family.
The distance that forms between friends when lives get busy and separation forms.
It could have been one of these things, all of them or a random combination of the five.
After a few crying spells, I decided to go to the one place that can almost instantly make me feel better about myself:
There I was, minding my own business when I ran into the last person I ever expected to see:
My friend, Taylor.
(Time out- A little history on my friendship with Taylor)
I met Taylor a little over a year ago. She was extremely quiet, and I am fairly certain I terrified her the first time I met her.
The teacher in me gravitates toward her because I want to help her communicate with the world, but I also just think she is a marvelous human being. I am frantically trying to find new things to keep her busy while also providing her with an opportunity to challenge herself socially. (Basically I make up an event and have her provide artwork for it...she loves it.)
Taylor struggles daily to find the right words to use for individual situations, but creating a masterpiece out of an empty sidewalk and a few pieces of chalk is as autonomic as breathing.
It is wonderful and amazing and marvelous and will have me scratching my head until I am a very old lady.
(Time in- Back to the story)
There I was, all melancholy and having a bad day, when I ran into Taylor.
It took a few moments for my emotional brain to register the fact that Taylor was working at Wal-Mart.
She wasn't working at a library, or behind a computer but AT WAL-MART.
I was shocked. We exchanged pleasantries, I made a few inappropriate jokes and I left the conversation stunned.
I was barely around the corner before a huge smile overtook my face and tears started making their way toward the ground.
Every piece of my bad day instantly dissolved.
The fact is... on Tuesday, August 20, 2013 the girl who can rarely find words left me speechless for what I'm sure won't be the last time in my life.
Thank you. Without uttering a single syllable you have helped me this week more than I could ever express.
Thank you for being brave.
Thank you for reminding me that bad days are just that--they are only bad until something good finds you. (Maybe it's in the dairy section at Wal-Mart)
Thank you for making my entire week better.
Thank you for reminding me while our struggles follow us wherever we go it is possible to forge ahead and keep them where they belong...behind us.
Thank you for proving my blind optimism and hope for the world (if just this one time) to be true.
Thank you for reminding me that sometimes the loudest messages are not ones we hear with our ears, but with out hearts.
I am so very proud of you.