09 March 2010

Charlie and Eleanor…

Sometimes God puts you in position to be blessed and you don’t even realize it until later. That happened to me today. I was at home, feeling a little under the weather with a sore throat and some achiness. I was really debating whether I should call in sick or not. (Now, if you know me, you know that NEVER happens. I will show up sick and then go back home before I call in sick, so that is some indication of how I was feeling). Then my phone rang and it was my supervisor asking me if I could not only come in, but come in early. As one of the few notaries in my department, my services were needed in order to go to a client’s home to get some legal documents executed. Now, it is an “honor” to be needed, but I have to admit to some griping and grumbling at the thought of having to go in early when I wasn’t really feeling well…but I’m a trooper and it’s a blessing to have a job, so I gathered myself together and headed into work.

I won’t go into some other frustrations that happened along the way, but suffice it to say, there were several things that happened between the time I arrived at the parking garage of my office and before we arrived at the clients’ home that made me really mentally pray that I didn’t lose my temper and go off on some people. But I pulled it together and put on my game face by the time we arrived at Charlie and Eleanor’s house. And that is when I discovered that God wanted me there for a specific, not necessarily related to my job, reason.

Let me stop to say: I’m a little jaded when it comes to “true love” and “relationships” and all that mushy stuff. (See my previous blog about Valentine’s Day if you don’t believe me.) So that may be the reason God wanted me present to witness these documents for this couple. Married for 60 years, they are trying to get their affairs in order before something happens to one of them. More than likely, it will be Charlie, since he has some serious health issues and just got out of the hospital recently. Going blind at age 84, he is a very cute bald-headed Southern gentleman, very courtly and obviously used to deferring to his very bubbly, energetic, pistol of a wife, Eleanor. Watching them interact and seeing the love they have somehow managed to hold onto for six decades literally brought tears to my eyes. As Eleanor helped Charlie find the lines where he needed to sign, she was never exasperated when he missed the mark; she made jokes about how she was going to take all his money and run away with it; and made us all laugh by calling him “Daddy” throughout the session. Like I said, she was a pistol.

But it was Charlie that almost made me lose it. As we were about to leave, out of the blue, Charlie asked the attorney who drew up the myriad of documents that his wife just helped him sign: “So, are you enjoying your life these days? Are you finding a reason for joy every morning?” I think it stunned the attorney as much as it shocked me because he just stammered and mumbled a generic “Well, some days more than others” as his response. Despite his handicaps and whatever health issues he was going through, Charlie was still optimistic about life and what it still has in store for him – for however long God should continue to grant him life.

I left their home with a better attitude. Here I am – blessed with all my mental faculties, able to care for myself and my loved ones, employed for 10 years at a firm in a job that I truly to enjoy and love – and yet, I was grumpy and complaining because I was slightly inconvenienced when I didn’t want to be. And here’s Charlie, who has a lot more to honestly complain about, and yet, he was an encouragement to me without even realizing it.

Yeah, God puts me in some amazing places to reveal Himself to me. Maybe one day, I’ll go willingly and without complaining – not waiting until He reveals the blessing to appreciate it. Maybe.

Be blessed.

© 2010 Kristina E. Smith
Tuesday, March 09, 2010

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