Monday, November 22, 2010
The Grace of Helping Hands
Regulars on the Playground will attest that I’m one of the resident pessimists around here, typically a glass half empty kind of person. And I have to agree with that sentiment. I whine, moan, and complain about all the bad, frustrating things that happen. So while I might live in Angel’s house, excuse me when I say that things have been a bit rough in these halls the last few months – hectic, stressful, chaotic, full of change. But being a pessimist doesn’t mean that I don’t see any good in my life, and each day of the past few months has shown me some very special blessings.
Unlike me, there are people in my life who are true Angels – lending a helping hand to a woman who has been desperately in need of them (even though it embarrasses this wonder-woman-wanna-be to admit that I need help with anything.) This week, just about every blog you visit, every commercial you see, every Facebook post, will be asking the same thing – what are you thankful for? The more appropriate question for me this morning is WHO am I thankful for?
Babysitters – With my husband working really long hours, 6 days a week now, I have lots of full time kid responsibilities going on. But sometimes I can’t do what I need to do with 2 kids tagging along, and several people in my life have been more than willing to keep my kids when needed. I don’t even have to ask! Most times, they simply offer. My mother-in-law has picked them up from school at a moment’s notice when I can’t make it back in time. My sister and sister-in-law have both let them come over to play with their kids while I run errands, meet with clients, and sometimes simply have a few hours to myself. My husband has even taken them to work with him a few times while I meet with clients!!! Knowing my children are not just in good hands, but with people who truly love them and enjoy having them around means a lot to me.
Cleaning Fairies – As if my mother-in-law doesn’t do enough for me already, I’ve come home several times to find that not only has she watched my kids, she’s done some chores around the house too! Its like having a cleaning fairy visit. Poof! The dishes are washed. Poof! The trash is gone. Poof! The counters are wiped down. And since I hate dishes, the fact that she would do them for me without asking is a double blessing!
Computer Gurus – Recently my computer got a virus, this time a bad one, and my entire system shut down. In stepped Super Geek (AKA, PC’s Darling Geek), who ended up spending days trying to retrieve my data, wipe the computer clean, and reinstall everything. Then Smarty Pants came by to re-set-up my email accounts and help me fix some installation problems. I would have been totally lost without their help! They each took time from their busy lives to come to the aid of the computer-inept. How’s that for friendship?
Clothier – Money’s been a little tight recently and wouldn’t you know it? Both Drama Queen and Little Man grew out of all their previous winter clothes, so they both had to have wardrobes in new sizes this year. On top of that, DQ finally decided she likes jeans (before she would only wear cotton pants). Do you know how much jeans cost? Especially when you have to buy enough for a kid to get from one weekend to the next without washing! One day, a friend from my writing group mentioned her daughter had outgrown some clothes, would I like them? Heck, yeah! Bless her heart, there were 5 pairs of jeans in that bag that fit. Not only did they fit, but DQ actually LIKED HOW they fit. (Needless to say, I was ecstatic!)
Mechanic – About a month ago, my mother and step-father came to visit for a nearby family reunion. Not only did they fill up my gas tank, but after hearing my baffled ramblings about the intermittent workings of my back blinker, my step-father spent some time looking at it one evening. He found a bent connector, which he fixed, and it has worked ever since. No more changing the light bulb every 2 weeks. Men can be SO handy!!!
Chauffeur – All of you moms out there know that we spend a lot of time in our cars. Sometimes I think I live in mine! And though it may not seem like much, that 40 minute trip twice a day to the school really adds up. Fortunately, I’ve got 2 chauffeurs to ease the burden. My mother-in-law volunteered to take the kids to school most mornings so she could spend some time with them (did I mention she’s a saint? No? Well, I should have…). And the hubby picks them up every time he has a weekday off. You don’t know what a relief it is to have something done by somebody else, until it magically gets done without me having to make the arrangements or ask someone to do it. Double relief, right there!
I could go on and on and on. This thanksgiving, I’m felled with gratitude for those who have reached out and gifted me with their time, talents, and grace just when I truly needed it. The very thought lightens this pessimist’s heart like nothing else could. I'm learning that even if you don't always voice your needs, somehow they make their way into the universe, only to be found by the very person able to fulfill them.
So I’m asking you today… who are you grateful for this year, and why?