There are times when the way we can connect with each other leaves me fragile and speechless. I forget and loose my way. I stumble and flail. My edges get too sharp until I cut someone close to me or retreat, bruised, into myself. I probably say this too much, but I believe in the power of storytelling to reach others and say, “here’s what is too sharp, too beautiful, too full, too much today.”
Wendy left a comment on my post at Mamalode, two hearts, two stones, and it won’t matter if you haven’t read it because her words are so simple and so true. They stand alone. I had to share them. Wendy, I hope you don’t mind.
Three days after my mom died, at my dad’s request, I walked into town to see if the weekly paper carried her obituary. For some reason (like, it was three days after my mom died), I didn’t wear a raincoat. In January. In Oregon. On a rainy day. I carried a pocketful of change, because didn’t have the mental capacity to figure out how much I’d need. After I bought the papers, I wondered if I had enough change left to buy myself a latte, so I could sit somewhere dry and look through them.
The man behind the counter saw me counting out my coins and asked what I wanted. I said, “I’m not sure yet, let me see how much I have.” He said, “Well, you just tell me what you want, and I’ll make it for you anyway.” So I got a three dollar latte for a buck fifty.
He didn’t even know. Everyone is kind to you when your mom dies, but this guy must just be kind to everyone.
It’s hard to remember when strangers are annoying, that they too are special, and we do not know their lives. I don’t want to be the people snapping at the lady who just lost her baby. I’d rather be the guy being gentle to the lady who just lost her mom.
If I can live even a small part of my life by the creed of that last paragraph, I’ll be thrilled.
Storytelling is important because some stories stay with us and make us better. Don’t you think?
While I’m gushing about sharing stories: LISTEN TO YOUR MOTHER announced an epic 2013 season with shows in twenty-four cities across America. Talk about power. We’re changing the world, one story at a time.