I know I am supposed to be writing about my childhood and the differences I have now as an adult however, something very significant is happening in our home and I would like to share it with you. (Full disclosure, the PLRWM is about to grossly brag about her daughter.)
About 18 months ago we started making a real concerted effort to meet our neighbors; remember in a previous post I shared how we live in a double cul-de-sac? Well we wrote a letter of introduction to all of our neighbors and every holiday, we have followed up with goodies and an update note or letter on our family. It has been surprisingly successful as we now know the names of almost every homeowner in both cul-de-sacs….that’s 28 homes total. An unforeseen byproduct of the first letter was a sweet relationship that developed between a retired nurse and my 14 year old daughter K. We had mentioned K played flute in our intro letter. A few days later, this lovely lady, we’ll call her Mrs. Nurse, wrote us a delightful note in return and mentioned how she had been interested in dusting off her old flute skills and maybe getting lessons from my teenager. We didn’t think much of it at first; thought it to be light banter but as our relationship began to grow with Mrs. Nurse and her hubby, the flute lessons became a reality.
Every week for the last 6 months or more, K skips over to her house to give flute lessons and in return……wait for it……Mrs. Nurse teaches K to cross-stitch. I have always recognized that there are no sufficient words to describe the total specialness of this relationship at this time. Even my son goes over on occasion to work on his own cross-stitch projects. It’s like a picture right out of the 50’s. In this day, when most parents don’t let their kids play out front for fear of what might happen, my children are building meaningful relationships with our neighbors. I cherish it immensely.
This morning, Mrs. N and I spoke over the phone. She had grim news. Her husband, who has not been feeling well since Christmas, found out this week that there is a large cancerous mass on his heart…behind his heart. It had been hiding from all 4 chest X-rays he’d had prior. Now, it’s far gone and he has been placed on hospice. This is a complete shock. If you’ve ever had the pleasure to meet him, he’s a very tall, active, healthy, charismatic and just down-right-handsome gentleman. They both have a strong faith and they know “this is his path to Heaven.” She went on to say “if God wanted him healed, He would have revealed the cancer much earlier.” They are resolved and committed to love each other with the few days they have left. As she has been clearing their schedule, canceling previous plans and trips, he told her he wanted her to keep her weekly flute lessons with K. He knows how much she enjoys her time with my daughter and they both see it as a respite from the week of care-giving. She went on, in her grief, to tell me how K is an “extraordinary young girl.” Through my tears, I have to agree. She is pretty great.
I thank God for weaving our families’ hearts together. Please pray for this newlywed couple (Mr. and Mrs. Nurse have only been married for 4 years) that there is little pain for him and that she will have the strength she needs both physically and emotionally to care for him. Pray for us as we try to minister to them in love and pray especially for K. She has an important task in front of her. I am overwhelmed at the thought of God using my precious baby girl for His glory and other peoples’ good. What a blessing.