Thursday, July 03, 2008

Acts of Kindness

I saw some friends of mine the other day that I haven't seen in a while. This couple used to live in my work-town but moved away fifteen years ago to a big Texas city three hours away. They kept their little house here which is on a small private lake.

They are in town hosting a Fourth of July reunion of old friends from back in the day. I won't be able to attend as I will be attending the tenth Bauer BBQ, so I stopped by on Wednesday after work to visit for about an hour. It was really great to see them and get caught up. One of the things they were telling me was about their daughter who has just completed her first year of college.

Now I'm really terrible about dates. Gene was the one that remembered our anniversary. I was all, "is it the 23rd? 25th? 24th?" And what year did some thing happen? That's a serious challenge.

Only the birthdays I grew up with - those of my immediate family - are etched in my mind. If there can be anything convenient about dying, well Gene died on my sister's birthay leaving only the year to memorize (2005). Although, being the singularly most shake-you-up event of my life, there's fat chance I'd forget it anyway.

So these nice people I was visiting tell me their daughter is nineteen now. Nineteen! This puts one of the momentous events of my life at nineteen years ago. See, I didn't remember the date, but just a vague recollection of a time period in my life.

Now I know it was 19 years ago that this same lady-friend was so, so very kind to me and brought her pregnant self up to the hospital and waited and crocheted while I had to go through tests one day. She didn't have to do that. She wasn't my closest friend or my best running buddy -- just a friend in my social circle at the time. But she endeared herself to me forever for taking the time to do that. My stubborn independent self didn't think I needed anybody, but somehow she knew better. And a day that was more scarey than I thought it would be was made a little easier knowing that some kind soul was out there in the waiting room just a few walls away supporting me.

Now we get to the momentous event. Not long after that, she and I were in the hospital together. After my surgery when they got me up walking, I'd amble down to the baby room to take a look at her beautiful baby girl. Although I've only seen her a time or two since then, her little life became a marker for me. She was born at the same time that I lost all chance of ever having a child of my own. But said lady-friend was so kind that I could not help but rejoice with her. She had so much love in her heart that it soothed and encouraged me in the emotional healing I'd be going through.

So now I know and it is written somewhere. I was 34.


Blogger latt├ęgirl said...

What a nice tribute! Funny how great friends can be made... as you said, an act of kindness. Bless her soul!

5:54 AM  
Blogger Susiewearsthepants said...

How sweet and heartbreaking at the same time! It nearly brought tears to my eyes. It's obvious you have a very loving heart.

8:48 PM  

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