Thursday, October 30, 2008

Heart warming

I am late writing today. The virus that attacked my monitor took over my cursor and froze it. Tonight, all will be repaired.... I hope!

A compliment is verbal sunshine. Robert Orben
Computers are interesting objects. Without realizing it, my computer has taken up residence in my life, become part of the daily wallpaper I apply to create value in my day. Writing here, has become integral to all I do. It is my morning inspiration, my morning starting point, my raison d'etre! And then, suddenly it becomes sick and I am at a loss.

Who woulda thunk it?

Who would have thought a simple complement would result in a warm sharing of thoughts and history with a woman at a post office? She was the attendant. I was there to mail a parcel. I commented on the pretty ring she was wearing. Three small hearts connected in a band with a small diamond in the centre of each.

"It was my mother's," she told me, stopping momentarily in the process of applying postage to my parcel. She glanced at the ring. "I gave her the ring for her 70th birthday. When she passed away three years ago, I got it back."

She went on to tell me about how wearing it brought her closer to her mother. How it made her smile to see it glittering on her finger. How she felt love just knowing it was there.

She told me about her mother's journey to Canada from Wales as a young bride. "My father couldn't afford to give her a diamond, and then, as the kids came, she had other priorities." She told me about her mother's struggles to find her place on foreign soil with a husband who was never home. Of how her mother raised four children mostly alone.

The parallels with my mother and father were remarkable. War bride. Aloneness. Struggles.

"My mother didn't want to wear the ring," she told me. "She was so afraid of losing it."

The ring will never be lost. It sparkles on the woman's finger, a connection to someone she loved.

As I left, I thanked her for sharing her story with me. She smiled and replied, "Thank you for admiring my ring. I don't often get to speak to strangers about my mother. She was a very special woman."

I smiled in return. "Thank you for sharing. You warmed my day."

Warming days. Heart warming. Heartening.

A brief encounter inspired by a comment I debated sharing. Was it okay to admire someone's jewellery? Was it okay to give her a compliment?

How many times to I hold back from telling someone something about them I admire? How many times do I withhold complements?

The question is: Are you missing opportunities to have your heart warmed by not sharing a warming comment with someone?

1 comment:

Merelyme said...

wow...that is an amazing story. mostly when you have to get lost in your own thoughts and don't think to talk to people. maybe i will try to strike up a bit of conversation next time.