Okay as promised – a feeling blue story. If you read the feeling blue post you read about Kelly’s random act of kindness. These are the things that can bring us real joy – serving others, making sacrifices, toiling that you might bring joy to another. Sounds a bit like motherhood doesn’t it?
My story. In 1998 a good friend of mine died unexpectedly. She had six children – one a preschooler. We were part of a group of gals who walked together in the mornings down the beautiful country roads after dropping off our children at school. Some of us pushed our babies in their strollers. We were the same group of gals that drove for every school outing, did hot lunches every month, sewed, cooked and helped out at school all the time. When Cora died leaving six children and a husband, we were all in shock as you can well imagine. But rather than turn inward, we turned our mourning into dancing. We started cleaning – everything – windows, closets, floors, gardens – the group of eight of us just got to work and made her house shine. It was so therapeutic. Her extended family were immensely blessed.
When her husband fell out of a tree two weeks later and badly broke his ankle and had to be off it for six months, we took over weekly cleaning and ironing of the house as well as some meal prep. There is a lot of ironing to do with five children in uniforms. For the rest of that school year each family made an extra lunch for one of her children. While I know we were blessing her husband and helping her children to still feel the presence of some order in their lives, I know the real blessing was ours. There were mornings that making five lunches instead of four caused me to complain. I had to only remind myself that the young man I was making this lunch for had suffered a great loss in his life. If I could add even just a smidgen of motherly love back into it, this was a privilege and not a burden.
Sometimes I get so self centered in my thinking. This is so wrong. I get lazy and turned inward. I think that as long as I am serving my family that is my self sacrifice. It is surely easy to serve my family! There really isn’t a whole lot of self sacrifice in that although I like to think there is.
I guess it is when I am called to serve others I don’t really know that well, that the real sacrifice happens. And the real goal is to do it without expecting any approval. I am not telling you this story for any of that. I just want say that there is really great joy in serving others and I think the best way to stop feeling blue, it to get out there and just do something for someone – even if it never gets noticed. Think about it. Is there someone out there that could use a little love, a little caring, a little something special in their lives? I bet there is.