Tears of Joy, Love and Gratitude
--by mermangel, posted Dec 26, 2008
This past Christmas is the first one ever that I feared we may not be able to bring Santa to our little ones who are 5 and 3. I tried not to get down or focus too negatively on it; I have a deep knowing that things always work out somehow and I also did not want to perpetuate a feeling of "lack" in our lives.
In late November, a memo came home from my son's school requesting anyone who felt they needed help with Christmas. People who had children under 12 were asked to call the phone number at a local outreach center. So, almost reluctantly, I called and was told to come to a local church the following day. I had to bring my daughter with me and I was feeling rather sheepish and a bit sorrowful.
The happy folks, all volunteers filling monthly supplies for a needy food pantry, were smiling and welcoming. An elderly man gave my little girl a candy cane and I was directed to fill out a form. Only the names and ages of my children and gift suggestions were requested, no income inquiries, nothing to shame me or my hard working husband. I did however reserve my requests for "gifts" to socks, slippers, winter boots and maybe some art supplies if they were feeling genereous. I know the intention of these good people is to provide a nice Christmas for kids but I felt disinclined to be "greedy" by expecting too much from strangers, you know?
On December 20, I went to pick up the items for the kids. With a bit of a heavy heart and some nervousness I headed into that same crowded room with the same smiling faces. All they asked was my name and then proceeded to hand me a HUGE bag filled to the brim with heaven only knows what and two rolls of wrapping paper. I handed one surprised lady a thank you card that I had written in advance and with a "Merry Christmas" and proceeded tearfully to the door. The tears were those of joy and relief, of grace and hope, of love and gratitude. That old bag was filled with socks, boots, slippers and art supplies but also included winter hats, gloves, shirts, pants, hot wheels cars, farm animals, dress up princess and ballerina costumes, huge stuffed animals for each of them and I am sure I neglected to mention something.
I don't know who "adopted" my kids this holiday season and I probably never will, but somewhere out there are the people who made our Christmas bright and lighthearted. I was humbled, as was my husband, by the generousity of the individuals that took those meager requests and contributed toward making my children's Christmas dreams come true. I can only imagine what that person visualized while shopping, but I so wish I could send him or her a mental snapshot of my beautiful daughter in her very own little tutu and my bright and handsome son who, as he was getting ready for school yesterday, said "I am so glad Santa brought me these new gloves and hat."
The fact is my kids are smart, clean, well groomed, well mannered and well dressed (thanks to my generous mother and sister who love to buy them clothes and to neighbors and friends who give hand me downs). No one knows that we have struggled financially. If you saw us in the grocery store or at the local park you wouldn't think for a minute that we were anything but happy (and we are!) but not ever in "need". If you are someone who has done such good in the world remember that when you see a beautfiul family out and about, you never know who you have touched with your kindness.
I wish there was a way to express my gratitude to those kind people who do this sort of good year in and year out. I know that this year is going to be an abundantly prosperous one for our family and it is my strong intention to be able to give as generously myself so that other families can be blessed as we have been.
Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.
God bless you :d
God bless you and bless all those who made christmas so wonderful for your children. You really have a big human heart.
C . Barkley
Thank you for bringing tears of joy to my face this morning. God bless your beautiful family. My family is the same as yours in a lot of ways and it felt really good to see this story.