Thursday, June 17, 2010

Chances Are

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Noah had his PT and OT this afternoon. I suppose I left feeling like Noah is making small achievements as I'm able to report new little things each time we go. It's nothing earth shattering, small tid-bits; inch-stones.

After therapy I decided to take Noah to the carwash since I had a free coupon that was going to expire. Noah has been to the carwash many times before, but today he was very upset and frightened by the water hitting the windows. Thank goodness it was a short carwash. I tried to get a beer at the gas station without success. I know many of you are probably scratching your heads; but Noah's mommy doesn't drink. True. But I was on the hunt for a single beer so that I could cook my chicken on the barbie in beer. The gas station attendant looked at me like she was trying to determine if I wanted to be intoxicated and then said, "dear we haven't carried beer in two years." I left with a smile thinking do I really look that worn down that I'm sending the signal I need to drink?

I went across the street to the only liquor store I know of that was close by, for my single can of beer with little Noah in tow in my arms. I picked out the cheapest beer I could find: $1.05 for one beer.

There was a lady ahead of me checking out. Very pretty and tall. She commented on Noah and him needing a nap. I told her the truth. He didn't need a nap. He's slouched in my arms because he's special needs and really has no other way to position himself. She said "I've been there for thirty-three years. I understand." She explained her daughter was special needs.

I inquired, asking as many delicate questions as I could quickly. I was hoping for a story of inspiration. To be told she grew up and learned to walk and talk and was just fine. But she didn't tell me that. She paused and answered very softly "Well, no, not exactly." My heart sank for a moment. I was searching for that story of hope today. I wanted it, have been craving it. Give me something God. A sign. Anything. Nothing is chance so why did you send this person to me today?

She told me of a book that was given to her that she read. Why Bad Things Happen to Good People by Rabbi Harold S. Kushner. I haven't read the book, maybe I need to. She said it changed her life and the way she viewed her situation with her daughter. She said you soon find out if you can handle anything or if you can't.

We made it to the edge of the parking lot. I asked her name. She said it was Elaine, I told her mine was Stacy, we hugged and had a brief crying embrace. I thanked her, as we both parted in tears. Our hearts spoke to each other, and our eyes flooded in response.

Of course my mother having this extra sense of when I need her the most calls and we talk on the phone about my "moment" as I still haven't quite recovered from my teary experience and my temporary aching heart. Sometimes what happens is all these emotions get stored up, all the worry and fears, all the pain and even the joys, the suppressed hard times and then the flood gates open every so often. Also compounded was my stress over our finances and reading so many blogs this week where parents have lost their children or are losing the battle with keeping their children from gaining their angel wings. I often feel tremendous guilt because my heart occasionally aches about Noah's challenges, but they are hurting far worse. They are having to say good-bye.

My mother in my moment of needing to find a glimmer of hope today says, "well didn't you hear about that boy that just graduated with special needs and they told his parents to institutionalize him and in his speech he said":

"I stand before you accepted into every institution of higher learning I applied to." He never spoke a word until the age of five.

So what is the lesson for me today? I suppose it could be several things. Never underestimate the power of a chance encounter. Know that all the messages mean something. Think about them, digest them, hold them tight in ponder. Then realize that you can do this no matter which way this turns out.

“Nothing happens by chance, my friend... No such thing as luck. A meaning behind every little thing, and such a meaning behind this. Part for you, part for me, may not see it all real clear right now, but we will, before long.” Richard Bach


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Noah's Miracle by Stacy Warden is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.