As November draws to a close and before the rush of the Christmas season truly begins I have been thinking about this month and it’s own excitement, for me at least. I turned 69 in November!! 69 rotations around the sun-what in the world! I keep wondering how that could have happened so quickly. I love November, celebrating my birthday, the fall and its cooler days (usually at least), and the changing of the leaves. I truly love the Thanksgiving season and all it involves and I have so much to be thankful for this year as every year.
I had a lovely few days celebrating my birthday. Cards, calls, text, flowers, gifts, time with friends and family and of course I loved the FaceBook greetings that allow me to stay connected to friends and family that are in distant places. I am so blessed. Some days it is overwhelming. But you may be surprised by the thing that captured my heart above all else on this birthday. Check out the picture—do you see it? That solitary gold candle among the bows. That was it! That candle is the top of the list. Let me explain.
On the Saturday following my birthday we met my son, his lovely wife Genevieve, and our granddaughter Dawn at Cracker Barrel in Crestview, FL to snag our sweet Dawn for a few days during the Thanksgiving break. This allowed a post birthday celebration with them. They had sent lovely flowers the day of my birthday and had also given me a beautiful pair of earrings and a card I simply loved that day. After our meal I ordered my usual “no sugar added” apple pie for dessert and that’s when my heart was stolen. My son Jonathan started rummaging around in the birthday goodies and pulled out the gold candle and a lighter. You see I have always had this thing about everyone needing a lit candle on their birthday. It has always been our family tradition and he didn’t forget. He put forth the effort to bring his mama a candle for her birthday celebration and that may seem small to you but it spoke volumes to me. He and his family are very busy, they have a lot going on and it would have been very easy to forget such a small detail—but he didn’t—and once again he stole this mama’s heart. The little things matter. In fact the little things may really be the big things in the long run for all of us. The time it takes to help someone overloaded with packages, stopping to let a mom and her kiddos cross the walkway at WalMart, taking the few seconds to let a fellow traveler merge into the exit lane may seem small but you never know how those little things may change a day. It can be as simple as taking the time to smile and speak to the overworked clerk at the store and ask her how her day is going. Maybe it’s spending 5 minutes at the bedside of a nursing home resident or even just the touch of your hand on theirs as you walk by. Bending down to look a child in the eye and really listen to what they are saying doesn’t take long but it lets them know they are important. There are so many little things that make life more bearable. As a family who has suffered the loss of a child I know for us just the time to say you remember and think about her is worth more than mere words can describe.
Yep, for this fellow struggler it’s the little things. I saved that gold candle and when I am gone and the kids are going through my things they may wonder why in the world I kept a single gold candle but now you know it was the “little thing
that captured my heart.