When I was seven my father died. He unfortunately had health issues and died of emphysema. He was 47. I remember very little about the services but I do remember sitting in one of the front rows at the wake and having some unknown woman pat me on the head as she sobbed and walked away. I don't remember who she was. A relative of some sort I imagine.
Funny what fleeting moments are the ones that become memories. Why don't I remember more? I'm certain there were other, more dramatic events that week.
I find it interesting, also, what the difference is between being seven in 1973 and being seven in 2012. Some of the children in Newtown were only seven... But I believe they had more say in their parent’s lives than I did when I was their age. Being seven today is like being fourteen or fifteen back in the 70's. We were told what was for dinner, where we were going, when it was bedtime and what was happening in the course of a day or a week. Seven year olds today are included in decision making. In fact many probably run the house! But I'm going off on a tangent here.
I want to know if when you close your eyes and have a quiet minute about yourself to reflect - do you KNOW you are special? Can you say yes to that question? I pray you say yes. I know I am special. I've known it for years. Why would God place me as the final child in a household of eleven? Why would he make me feel in my heart that I had value and a purpose to be here? Why would he loan to me the two best boys I could ever hope to give birth to? Why is it that I'm the one right here, right now writing this blog? I've never even read a blog or followed a blog. Matter of fact this blog was set up for me by a friend so all I have to do is type. I do believe that I am special.
I've actually had this conversation with several people. My friend Gene and I talked about this years ago. He also knows he's special. He feels it in his core. Right in his heart. I hope you do too.
That lady that patted me on the head made me feel special. I'm not sure why. She showed me emotions I was not used to seeing in an adult. I was used to not being included in things. Remember it was 1973. I didn't quite understand why she was patting me but an inner voice recognized that something different was taking place that night. It was. Life was very different after that day but I'd like to think that's when I was given incredible strength.
Do you know how special you are? Do you know the impact you have on the people around you? Do you realize that what you do or say can help or hurt? I have not always been cognizant but these past couple of weeks has shaken me deeply in many ways. I have never hurt so much in my life. I truly have a broken heart. My chest physically aches and feels bruised to the touch. I keep rubbing it to soothe it but it doesn't go away. I have also never witnessed firsthand the kindness and generosity of people around me. I never thought myself rude but I now know I have a lot of room for improvement! The caring words, handmade gifts, meals, hugs and tears shared are above and beyond what I could imagine. I can do better and I will do better going forward. I am special and I will remember that all the more now. You need to do the same.