The most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched. They must be felt with the heart. -Helen Keller
Today, my mom was in a car accident. This one wasn’t a fender bender, but rather an axle-breaking, two vehicle doozy. I’m incredibly thankful that all the involved parties are doing fine. R.I.P. to Marilyn, Mom’s five year old minivan, but otherwise….whew!!
Here’s the thing about my mom. She’s never been in an accident. That adrenaline was still pumping rather significantly through her veins several hours later when she called to tell me about her day, despite the wine she’d been drinking in a very transparent attempt to calm the heck down.
Paulette Moody was Mom’s hero today. By the laws of transference, that makes her my hero too. You see, as Mom left the YMCA after her workout today, she was headed to meet Paulette. Fate landed one of my most favorite humans on the planet in a tangled mess in the middle of an intersection with a random guy driving a truck instead. After the fireman and the police got to the scene, Mom ended up walking to a nearby Jimmy Johns to calm down. She informed her friend, the former nurse with the heart of gold, that she wasn’t going to make it….and guess what Paulette did in response? She showed up. She stopped her day and went to sit beside Mom because that’s what Paulette does. Paulette went directly to my mother, and sat with her and chatted about anything she could think of discussing, right there at Jimmy Johns. They spoke about their children, their friends….just anything besides the accident. She looked after the well-being of her friend who was incredibly rattled.
It’s the identical choice she made when my grandmother died. She drove the two hours in the dead of winter across the state and she showed up. She spotted me and she wondered how her friend was doing. “No, really. How is she?” She showed up to the tiny little funeral home in Hartford City and she hugged my mom and she told her she was just sorry and that she loved her. She was present.
Thanks for being there today for Mom, Paulette. You just get it. Sometimes, it stinks for me living in a different city than my hometown. Knowing that Mom has friends like you who truly care means everything. I’m grateful for your example of how important it is to SHOW UP. Showing up is everything.
It is not necessary to teach others, to cure them or to improve them; it is only necessary to live among them, sharing the human condition and being present to them in love. –Charles de Foucauld