I walk my little doxie, Lucy, every morning. The length of our stroll is dependent upon the temperature, humidity and lately a neighbor that I will refer to as 'Mrs. Kravitz'.
Until last week Mrs. K has only walked on occasion. And, when she does, you will no doubt learn a lot about her life, who our other neighbors are, what they and their children are doing.
The last time I lucked into such a meeting, we had just begun our walk and as she started talking my little Lucy did her business.
Mrs. K said, " now you need to bag that up."
"Since it's an empty lot, I usually wait until I'm on my way home and then bag and grab it. That way I don't have to carry it all the way through the neighborhood." I replied.
"If you bag it now, you can lay the bag on the curb, that way you won't forget it, and will see it and can grab it on your way back." She said.
It's hard to break old habits. So, I bagged the poop and laid it on the curb, all the while listening to her remind me what a great idea that was. My twelve step brain was so angry. Why do I automatically try to please others? Why didn't I just say, " that's a great way of doing it too" and just continue walking?
I've taken to looking out both doors before leaving and if she is on her walk, I just wait. How silly is that? Then one day last week, after I Lucy and I took our walk, I decided to put some day lilies in the ground before I took my shower and guess who was rounding the corner?
Inside, my youngest was having breakfast. She heard me mumbling about what to do because I really needed to get them planted and get moving to get to a morning appointment.
"What is going on"? She asked.
"Oh, Mrs. K is walking and I'm afraid if I plant the lilies now and she stops to talk, I will never get away." Then an idea came to me.
" Will you do me a favor"? I asked.
"Sure" She said.
"If she stops to talk and you see that I just cant get away, will you bring out the phone and tell me that there is a call for me"? I asked feeling mildly guilty for including her in my deceit.
"Yes, I'll save you" She chuckled.
I began digging as the guilt made it's way in. She is probably just lonely, I thought. How many times over the years have I told people what to do?
"Lord, please forgive me. Help me to be kind." I silently prayed even though I did NOT really want to be kind.
On hands and knees, as I am putting the lily in the ground I hear her voice. "You make me feel guilty out here planting this early." She says as she walks up to where I am planting.
"Moooom" I hear coming from the front door. Wow, she did not waste a single second. I just meant to save me if I was trapped.
"The phone is for you." She said with an enormous smile on her face, all the while trying to give me some secret message by raising her eyebrows and winking at the same time.
"Always busy." Mrs. K said and headed towards her home.
Daughter whispers, "the phone really is for you."
We both laughed. Maybe, if I was willing or perhaps even struggling to do the right thing, then God was willing to give us a little laugh for the morning. Maybe it was just good luck. I don't know.
As families in addiction, we sometimes need to focus on these little graces and move our focus so that the day has meaning and purpose instead of the insanity that the disease brings. I just wanted to share this with you in the hopes that it would brighten your day.
Praying for Henry. Mine and yours.