Earlier this year, a lady in our parish made my day – maybe even my year. Her kind words meant a lot to me. I shared the story in an earlier post but below is a paragraph from it:
She told me, “I’ve been watching you with your children for years.” You have to understand, we go to a HUGE parish. I don’t even come close to knowing everyone. I recognized her from going to church every Sunday though. She continued, ”I don’t know what you’re doing but it’s amazing. All of your kids not only behave phenomenally in church but they participate without being prompted by you. I just wanted to tell you that.” I thanked her and she walked off.
Yesterday, we had our 40 Day Blessing. (You can see photos on my post on Illumination Learning) After Liturgy, this woman continued to give me strength through her kindness as she handed me a gift for Gabriel after Liturgy. I was deeply touched by this gift.
Over the years, I’ve become accustomed to being invisible to most people. I can’t even tell you how many times I’ve previously met people through school, work, friends…wherever – and if I meet them again in a smaller group of people they’ll reintroduce themselves to me. Really? I made that little of an impression on you? That’s my life. I’m used to being invisible. Part of it is the introvert in me – I don’t like aiming the spotlight at myself.
The point is – I’m used to being invisible and this lady sees me. She doesn’t know much about me. She doesn’t know that my dad’s a priest. (Believe me…there are a lot of pre-conceived notions about what a PK is supposed to be like – good or bad.) She doesn’t know about my personal blog. She doesn’t even know about Illumination Learning. The only way she knows me is by seeing me in church each Sunday. The way my children act tell her a story about me, I suppose, as my husband points out to me. True, it took a lot of work to get my kids to behave the way they do in church. We all wish there was some magic button…but there’s not. This lady saw all the work I’ve done with my kids despite the silence of my words and the lack of a relationship between the two of us.
As we got into the van, all the kids were anxious for me to open the gift immediately. She thoughtfully gave us some hand-me-down clothes from her grandson along with a brand new outfit.
Next week I’ll be handing her a thank you note with an invitation to Gabriel’s baptism tucked inside of it.