This isn't the post I intended to write. As you can see from yesterday's post, I'm a little under the weather. This post was supposed to be your regular run of the mill, my life in Instagrams, "bs" that I always post. I was all ready for it, until I took an emotional detour.
After my doctor's appointment yesterday, I stopped at Whole Foods for some Turkey Day supplies. It was a quick trip and before I knew it, I was back in the car on my way home. I was frustrated, and feeling awful. I had planned a million things for Monday. A play date for Caitlin with one of my dearest friends and her kiddos. I've missed her and since school started we just can't seem to get together. I was also a tad peeved that I was going to have to cancel my Breaking Dawn date with my bestie. She's the reason I even fell in love with the books, and we have seen every movie together. Plus I couldn't breathe, I felt like I had an elephant sitting on my chest. So there I was, focused, annoyed, and inconvenienced.
Then I saw her. At the stoplight. With her tattered coat and dirty hands. Holding a small sign. The fact that she was there wasn't a surprise. It's common to see people asking for spare change at that intersection. What did surprise me was her sign. It didn't say "Need Money" or "Need Food", it simply said, "Anything will help".
Like a warmer coat. A warm meal. A cup of coffee. A prayer.
So I got out my wallet and gave her $5. As I handed it to her out of my window she said "Happy Thanksgiving", and I said "Thank you", which left me feeling cold. I'm thanking her for wishing me a Happy Thanksgiving? Seriously?
I'm sure it was my illness, or my over all tiredness and frustration, but I started to cry. I realized that that $5 wouldn't even buy a sandwich at the Whole Foods I just left. That I would indeed have a Happy Thanksgiving, yet all I had to offer was $5. Here I was frustrated and annoyed at breaking plans and being sick. What a punch in the gut.
Emotional detour can really put life in perspective.
This Thanksgiving I will be warm and fed, and quite possibly still nursing this cough. But I will have the blessing of the loved ones around me, the warmth of a winter coat, the luxury of a bed. All things that I take incredible advantage. I'd be lying if I said that I thought about those less fortunate than me while I stuff my face with my portion of a 20 pound bird. This year though, I'm thinking about it a lot.
It's been a rough year at my house. We have gotten by, but it hasn't been easy. There are luxuries that we go without. I don't talk about money or status on my blog, but I'm a stay at home mom. My hubby works hard. We do what we have to do. But it's by no means a walk in the park. How easily we could be on the other side of giving.
I can't ignore that any longer.
Last week on the Embrace Your Life Blog, I wrote about being thankful for the messy, the annoying, and the inconvenient. Dirty dishes mean we have food to make and eat. Dirty clothes mean we have more than one shirt for our backs. A living room full of toys means that we have children and they are playing. All things that at first glance we may overlook as messy or inconvenient. But in reality they are the greatest blessings of our lives.
Today I'm thankful for one stranger, who sent me on an emotional detour,