Dear Mr H,
What a very interesting experience it was running in to you the other day.
Since my son is three, it doesn’t shock me for him to experiment in touching things. This is pretty normal for three year olds. But what did shock me was your response when he knocked down the books next to you. I’m pretty sure it shocked my son when you hissed “Jesus Christ” loud enough for half the library to hear. You see, we tend to only use that name in a respectful tone or in prayer.
So it didn’t surprise me that he ran back to me quickly.
But it did shock me….again…when you were waiting for me with my three children after we were at the help desk to get right in my face about how my son knocked books down, or how when I walked to pick them up you followed me to continue to berate me. Like you needed to make sure I knew you thought I was a bad mom.
I was shocked and numb by your actions. If you were hoping to upset a random mom in the library, you did a good job. If you hoped to ruin a young mom’s day by ridiculing normal three year old behavior, you succeeded.
But what you didn’t probably expect is that I knew you, Mr. H. You see, I took music lessons as a child from your wife. And more recently I was the woman who welcomed you to the yoga class at the cancer center and spoke positive words to you about your diagnosis and treatment. I don’t think you remembered that, or me for that matter, but I remember you.
I want to thank you Mr. H, for ruining my day, and reminding me, following cancer, that every day is a gift. Every day I have the power to do good. My words can hurt or heal. I thank God for every day that I have to be a positive influence in someone’s life.
I’m sure I shocked you when I told you I knew you from the cancer center. I did so to remind you that life is far too short to worry about someone’s else’s child knocking some books on the floor.
Or spilled milk, or being late, or what you should wear that day.
And I meant it when I told you that “you could have chosen to be nice but instead you chose to be mean.”
Thank-you cancer and thank-you Mr. H for reminding me of this.