Saturday, May 17, 2008

Nice Surprise

If you are looking for quilty I'll start with that. I am trying to have a quilt-a-thon day today as DH and DD1 are moving all her "stuff" back for IN today. Have you checked it out over at Judy's blog? So we will see how it goes. I am working on the quilt for my sister. I have all three of the rows for each nine patch sewn together and now must sew the rows together into the 9 patches. Then I can begin putting the whole thing together.

Now for the surprise. This is definately not quilt related so if you don't want to know you can stop right here!

I don't know if I have told you this before but for about 12 years my hubby and I were officials for USA Swimming. We began when DD2 was very little and worked our way up to the highest level over the years. (DH decided he needed to do it since I was doing it if he ever wanted to see me on the weekends. The meets last the entire weekend from Friday night until about 5or so on Sunday. There are 4 sessions for most meets. If there were prelims and then finals it was more. Also the championship meets were definately longer too, but I digress. When we first got on the deck there were few women officials, me and 2 others. One that didn't work very much and one older lady that was really, really scary. Kind of grumpy most of the time. So when my much younger self showed up on the deck many parents were happy to see me. They would tell me they felt better letting their kids go on the deck alone and knew that they could come to me if they had a problem and the kids were not afraid of me (I wasn't as scary as that other woman and most of the men were older and a little scarier for the kids too) You need to know that kids as young as 5 were entered in these meets and it was a little intimidating for them.

Well, I had several experiences that I have come to find out that have had quite an impact on the kids. One of which I will share here. I met Ali for the first time when she was around 8, I think. She was this cute little girl with a huge smile. She would come to me after every swim and tell me her times. I saw her frequently at lots of meets over time. One time I saw her team at the meet but she wasn't there. Maybe she was busy. This happened a few times so I asked the coach where she was. Apparently her mom had cancer, and it was bad. She was not going to make it. Her dad was taking care of her mom and had lost his job. I felt so bad for her. She wanted to spend time with her mom before she died. So I was thinking about her and her mom and wondering what I could do for them. I went to the video store by my house and got a gift card for some movies and some gift certificates for candy and mailed them to her with a card explaining that she and her mom could watch whatever they wanted and spend time together (If I remember correctly mom was bed bound). She thanked me and I saw her a few years later at a meet. She came up to me and told me how much it had meant to her and her mom that I had sent the gift. Well, her mom didn't die and was there with her dad and she proudly introduced them to me. The mom also told me how much the gift had touched her.

Over the years I have lost touch with Ali but yesterday I received an invitation in the mail to her high school graduation party! She has turned into a beautiful young woman! If it is at all possible I will plan to go and see her and wish her well in her life.

It is truly amazing how a small act of kindness can have such an effect on someone's life, isn't it? Can you believe after all these years she still remembered me?? I feel blessed that she wanted to include me in her celebration. As Mrs. Goodneedle says...Life is good! Now get out there and perform a random act of kindness!

2 comments:

Natalie said...

What a wonderful outcome, and I am not the least bit surprised they remember you... your gesture was kind and thoughtful. You are making the world a better place and I am so glad this encounter has shown you the truth of that!

atet said...

Those kinds of surprises are the very best kind. It doesn't surprise me at all -- and kind of reminds me of a chance meeting my Dad once had with a former client. Just goes to prove that acts of kindness do have their own reward :0). Now, I want to see that ugly quilt...

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