Someone cracked a joke up front and I didn’t hear that laugh. The kind of laugh that made me giggle all the way in the back even though I didn’t hear the joke.
Small things that people do for us mean a lot and we don’t even realize it until they are gone. My friend Renee Walker did that for me.
Renee spent an afternoon on her day off keeping me company when I was on maternity leave. That was awesome. I needed that more than she would ever know, especially since I was real nervous new mommy.
She always listened to my whining when everybody else had had enough. She would listen, even though she was probably fed up too but she still listened and tried to be sympathic. She taught me to listen ... really listen.
I lost not only Renee last year but also three other people dear to me and each one has special memories in my heart.
Caroline Ivy, a retired Bolivar Commercial employee, was as tall as a church mouse but had a personality that shined taller than the clouds. She always had a corny joke to tell or was playing a practical joke. She could make a craft project out of just about anything. She taught me to enjoy life as it comes.
Beverly Mixon, who I’ve known all my life, but didn’t become friends with until she was working at the Hallmark store. She was a light, bright and cheery. She brought me through my wedding, and all my challenges I experienced with pregnancy. She loved to say, “I am your second mama!” when I would call the store to talk to the first. This emotional cheerleader knew there would be a baby and there has been. She taught me to believe.
And then there is my aunt, Pat Montesi. Most people thought my Aunt Pat was just a quiet person. She was sometimes, but when she did smile, you knew you were being smiled at. A caring woman who loved us all even if you didn’t realize it at the time.
She lit a candle at church with me when my grandmother died and another in celebration of my new marriage. She stopped by to have coffee with me one morning after I got back from my honeymoon to check on me cause she said my Uncle Brother had been wondering if I was happy. She worried about her children and family. She wanted the best lives for us. She gave us gentle hugs and fussed at us when we needed it. She taught me to pray, in good times or bad and have a quiet strength.
I have come to realize all of us on this amazing earth have gifts we give to each other, without even knowing it. While writing this I think about all the gifts people around me give to me everyday. Maybe if we took the time to think of these special gifts, it would bring us some joy to our busy lives. As for me, I guess I’m luckier in life than I thought.