She Ran To Give an Elderly Man Back His Walking Cane, And Received Far More In Return
--by brindlegirl, posted Apr 23, 2017
He was an elderly man. Quite elderly. I'd say with no more than a few years left in him, on this earth. If he's lucky.
I didn't see him at first. Had to search for him. Search for the owner of a very worn and old wooden walking stick, which was left half hanging outside of a shopping cart.
I called out to a man who was walking away. I knew it was his. Had to be. It was. And he returned (slowly) to get it.
I was in a friendly mood so started a conversation. And that's when it happened. That's when this man blessed me, with his story. And what a story.
I stood outside the supermarket with him for 10 minutes. Just listening. Just witnessing this man and his life. And that's all he wanted. To be heard. To be seen. To SHARE HIS STORY. And his life. To know that his 90 something years on this planet had mattered.
As I stood there listening to this man share his heartache and pain over losing his first wife during childbirth to his only son. And then later his joys of raising this son on his own, and traveling the world. To finally ending in true love where he married a childhood sweetheart. This story. His story. Is all our stories.
We all suffer. We all grieve. We all love.
We all yearn to be loved. We lose love. We find love. And we all want to know that it mattered. That our life mattered.
At the end of our conversation this elderly man clasped both of my hands in his, raised them up to his heart, looked me in the eyes and thanked me. Thanked me like I've never been thanked before. So sincerely. So heartfelt.
He thanked for listening and allowing him share his story. And then he turned around and walked away. Forever.
I needed to sit down after this. It was almost too much. This man. This dear man had just gifted me with a gift so precious - him. His life. His story. Who he was. What he was. And something so deeply intimate.
As he walked away a feeling so strong washed over me. And I heard a voice. A voice of God maybe. A voice that told me he was at peace now. That he could happily leave this world now. Knowing that his story mattered. Knowing that HE mattered. That someone had heard him. Seen him. Listened. And witnessed.
Strangers are never strangers if you open your heart to them. Often they are angels in disguise. Waiting to bless you or to be blessed.
Yesterday I was both. An angel to this man, yet at the same time, blessed by him.
Open your heart. Connect with others. Listen. Share. It's what we are all here for 💗
Keep going - you're doing the work.