This afternoon I went to my mailbox at work. Lo and behold, there was a piece of returned mail. When I looked at the address on the envelope it had a house number and then "Wong Way". As in, 2222 Wong Way. WONG WAY. Is it wong that I laughed my guts out? Is it wong, or is it wight? I don't know. It just makes me realize what a gift it is to be able to laugh and to find pleasure in things that may appear to be small and insignificant.
It wasn't the easiest of days. One of my residents was not doing well and last I saw him, his lovely wife was on her way to take him to the VA hospital. He didn't look well and he, who usually is heavy on charm and rich in smiles, was not very responsive. My heart ached for him and for his sweetheart. When I got home tonight, there were some little challenges waiting for me there. Dark clouds hovering, with storms in the distance. Then there was the news of Haiti...where our sponsored child, Remise, lives. Is she still alive? If she is alive, after the devastation of the earthquake, are her parents gone? Her siblings? Her home?
I consider anger, tears and frustration and then remind myself that with the bitter, comes the sweet. Sometimes it's harder to see when we're sinking into the relentless quicksand of sadness. Sometimes we need to look a little harder, and be willing to focus on a whole bunch of little things that help us get past some of the big nasty ones.
That said, I began to recount my day, and realized quickly that the day was full of sweetness. Laughter with my office mate about Wong Way...a lunch time walk with co-workers, up a hill and around the fountain at LMU on a beautiful day...a beautiful 10 month old girl named Penelope in our lobby...coming across a piece of paper with movie titles written by my Dad and the swelling of my heart at that remembrance...the opportunity to offer comfort to a friend who was hurting...music to sing along with enroute to work and a sunset over the ocean as I drove along the Coast on my way home...Cajun salmon for dinner....frozen lemonade for dessert...a precious thank you note from my nephew Jack, thanking us for a gift card and telling us he'd purchased gifts for his mom and brother with it...all good, sweet things to be thankful for. And, I am.
Thank you God, for helping me to look beyond those things that threaten to destroy my joy, wipe me out, leave me desolate, discouraged and sad. Thank you for reminding me of all the sweet things. The tender moments. The warm smiles. The healing of laughter. The love that is irresistable. Thank you that although the earth shakes and people are sick and sorrowful and angry, that You, oh God never let go and you never give up. You are on the throne and You are good.
And God...please take care of Hank...and Remise. In Jesus Name, Amen