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Monday, November 26, 2012

My Own Little World

For the last several Thanksgivings, I have helped my Mama prepare the meal. She always does the majority of the cooking, but I would bring one dish and help prepare another dish. It is a tradition that I look forward to every year. This is such a special time that I spend with my Mama before anyone else arrives for our dinner. She always breaks out with the aprons that my great grandmother handmade and we both wear them. I love those little aprons.  I vaguely remember my great grandmother. I was 6 years old when she died.  I do fondly remember staying at her house and that she was a sweet and adorable person.

This year when I called my Mama to help plan Thanksgiving dinner, I asked her if she wanted me to come early and help and she said  "no." At first I was very heartbroken. After all these years, she didn't want me to help and share those special memories or make new ones??!!  I felt betrayed by my own Mother - what a feeling!  She said it would be too much for me to try to help cook this year. After much careful thought and consideration, I asked my daughter to take my place. She said that she didn't know how to cook. I said that is why you should go, so you can learn. I thought it would be a great time for my daughter to learn and spend some special time with her grandmother.

When Thanksgiving day arrived, I planned on sending my daughter a text a couple of hours before she was supposed to be there. You know, just in case she planned on ditching the whole idea. But my brother and his wife were spending a few days at my house and time slipped away from me. I sent the text at about the time she was supposed to be there. I was so proud when the reply text came back that she was already there!

Determined to help and enjoy some of this special time for myself I arrived early too.  I wanted to at least be there before everyone else arrived.  As it turned out my brother and his wire rode with me. By the time we showed up, my Mama and my daughter had everything ready.  All the food was cooked and the table was set. Again, I felt a little disappointed but at the same time, I felt immense pride.  Someone had taken my place, but it was my daughter and I was very grateful.

After the meal, I usually help clean the kitchen.  It has always been something that I enjoy doing. Helping my Mama clean up after she worked so hard preparing our meal just seemed liked the least I could do.  This year things were different. My daughter once again took my place and cleaned up after we all ate. I can hardly describe the joy that filled my heart.  I am able to do less now, but my young daughter stepped in like a responsible adult and took control of the situation.

At first, I think she was afraid. She was afraid that she would not know what to do.  How many times in our lives do we let fear hold us back from trying something new or helping someone out?  We are so afraid of getting out of our comfort zone, but there are people in need all around us.

As an IC patient, I am limited in what I can do, but that doesn't mean I can't do ANYTHING!  I can reach outside of my own little world to help comfort someone else in need. I can call someone who is sick or who just may be lonely. I can't cook a meal for a person in need, but I can buy them lunch.  I am unable to do much shopping, but I can go online and buy gifts for a needy family.  I can give one of the most precious gifts of all, my time.  I can send a Christmas card to a neighbor or friend. We all have different talents. Consider what yours are and use them to share joy with someone else.

Don't let fear hold you back from making a difference in the life of someone this holiday season.  If we share some of our talents, time or money we will have joy in return. I have been blessed with so much in my life, I always try to reach out to someone in need, especially this time of year. If you do not know someone in need, contact a school or church.  I'm sure they will be able to put you in touch with someone that has needs or just needs a friend.

"Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver." II Corinthians 9:7

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