Monday, April 16, 2012

Laugh or Cry?

The Texas teacher was helping one of her kindergarten students put on his rain boots. He had asked her for help and she could see why. Even with her pulling and him pushing, the little boots still didn't want to go on.

Finally, when the second boot was on, she had worked up a sweat. She almost cried when the little boy said,

"Teacher, they're on the wrong feet."

She looked and sure enough, they were. It wasn't any easier pulling the boots off than it was putting them on. She managed to keep her cool as together they worked to get the boots back on, this time on the right feet. He then announced,

"These aren't my boots."

She bit her tongue rather than get right in his face and say, "Why didn't you say so?" like she wanted to. And, once again she struggled to help him pull the ill-fitting boots off his little feet. No sooner did they got the boots off and he said,

"They're my brother's boots. My Mom made me wear 'em."

Now she didn't know if she should laugh or cry. But, she mustered up the grace and courage she had left to wrestle the boots on his feet again. Helping him into his coat, she asked,

"Now, where are your mittens?" and he said,

"I stuffed 'em in the toes of my boots."

~ Author Unknown ~

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

The Girl in the Pink Dress

There was this little girl sitting by herself in the park. Everyone
passed by her and never stopped to see why she looked so sad. Dressed in
a worn pink dress, barefoot and dirty, the girl just sat and watched the
people go by. She never tried to speak. She never said a word. Many
people passed by her, but no one would stop.

The next day I decided to go back to the park in curiosity to see if the
little girl would still be there. Yes, she was there, right in the very
spot where she was yesterday, and still with the same sad look in her

Today I was to make my own move and walk over to the little girl. For as
we all know, a park full of strange people is not a place for young
children to play alone. As I got closer I could see the back of the
little girl's dress was grotesquely shaped. I figured that was the
reason people just passed by and made no effort to speak to her.

As I got closer, the little girl lowered her eyes slightly to avoid my
intent stare. As I approached her, I could see the shape of her back
more clearly. She was grotesquely shaped in a humped-over form.

I smiled to let her know it was OK; I was there to help, to talk. I sat
down beside her and opened with a simple, "Hello." The little girl
acted shocked, and stammered a "hi," after a long stare into my eyes. I
smiled and she shyly smiled back.

We talked until darkness fell and the park was completely empty. I asked
the girl why she was so sad. The little girl looked at me with a sad
face said, "Because I'm different." I immediately said, "That you are!"
and smiled. The little girl acted even sadder and said, "I know."

"Little girl," I said, "you remind me of an angel, sweet and innocent."
She looked at me and smiled, then slowly she got to her feet and said,

"Yes, you're like a little Guardian Angel sent to watch over all those
people walking by." She nodded her head yes, and smiled. With that she
opened the back of her pink dress and allowed her wings to spread, then
she said "I am. I'm your Guardian Angel," with a twinkle in her eye. I
was speechless -- sure I was seeing things.

She said, "For once you thought of someone other than yourself. My job
here is done."

I got to my feet and said, "Wait, why did no one stop to help an angel?"
She looked at me, smiled, and said, "You are the only one that could see
me," and then she was gone. And with that, my life was changed
dramatically. So, when you think you're all you have, remember, your
angel is always watching over you.

-Author Unknown-

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

The Things We Keep

I grew up in the forties with practical parents. A Mother, God love her, who washed aluminum foil after she cooked in it, then reused it. She was the original Recycle Queen, before they had a name for it.

A Father who was happier getting old shoes fixed than buying new ones.

Their marriage was good, their dreams focused. Their best friends lived barely a wave away. I can see them now, Dad in trousers, tee shirt and a hat and Mom in a house dress, lawn mower in one hand, dishtowel in the other.

It was the time for fixing things - a curtain rod, the kitchen radio, screen door, the oven door, the hem in a dress. Things we keep.

It was a way of life, and sometimes it made me crazy. All that re-fixing, reheating, renewing, I just once wanted to be wasteful. Waste meant affluence. Throwing things away meant there'd always be more, and more.

But then my Mother died, and on that clear summer's night, in the warmth of the hospital room, I was struck with the pain of learning that sometimes - there just isn't any "more."

Sometimes, what we care about most gets all used up and goes away, never to return.

So while we have it, it's best we love it. We care for it. We fix it when it's broken. And we heal it when it's sick.

This is true for marriage, for children with bad report cards, for aging parents, for best friends that move away, and for dogs with bad hips. These are things that make life important. Things we keep.

We keep them because they are worth it. Because we are worth it.

~ By Sheri Sobek ~