Woven Blessings
Summer 2008

by Sheri L. VanDuyn


There are times in your life when you feel you are just blessed. I experienced this at the beginning of the New Year 2008. I really enjoyed “quiet” time this past “Winter” or time by myself in Florida. I had time for reflecting-just pondering “life” while all alone in my folk’s condo. My parents would be making their way down and my husband would soon be “collecting” me to take me back home to reality!

 One night my shopping venture really made me think! I returned to a linen store to check out further reductions on their post-Christmas sales. I had eyed some things and was hoping that the prices would drop again. I walked the whole store for exercise and spotted a young mother with her baby daughter. She too was getting bargains and had filled her whole cart with snowman cake molds. These had been reduced from $15.00 to $1.00 and after baking these cute shapes, you could decorate. She tried to encourage me to purchase one; I smiled and said, “Yes, they are cute; but no thanks, my children are grown and I have other items to purchase in mind!”

 By the time I made my selections, I headed for the checkout and in front of me was this same excited young mom. The cashier was trying her best to check her out, but the new low price and code was not allowing her. I began talking to her darling daughter with her gorgeous brown curls and I asked how old she was-she had turned 1 on Christmas Day! Cool, a Christmas baby! I told her that I had a niece, now 20 who had come home on Christmas and her name was Natalie! All the while the cashier is pressing code numbers, calling for assistance, joking with us! The young mom was so proud of all her purchases-she had 13 of these cake molds loaded in her cart and was going to have a big birthday party next season. I suggested that she could use one as an ice ring or for Jell-O. The cashier laughed and said we both were so clever. 

The inquisitive mom said to the cashier, “I can tell you really like children the way you are entertaining my daughter while waiting for the price check code.” “Yes, I do!” she responded. Then the mom asked the poignant question-“Do you have children?” The cashier took a breath and said, “I did, but my son, 6 was killed by a drunk driver. I lost my son and my Father in the same accident.” Our whole up beat tone immediately ceased! This mom and I must have had a look of shock on our faces; the cashier apologized, “I am sorry; I did not mean to spoil your fun and your outing while you were waiting on me, but you asked and I wanted to be honest!” 

The young mom said, “I am so sorry for your loss and I want you to have one of my snowman molds-please take 1! We live close; I will come back often and share my daughter’s smiles with you!” She hesitantly took the snowman seeing that the mom was so sincere and wanted to share this token with her. She paid and left with her whole cart full of the molds; now it was my turn.  

I took a deep breath as the cashier tried to apologize for being so open. I said, “Do not worry; you put your life out there to put our lives into perspective. Sometimes we are so blessed that we forget to see other’s pain! God will bless you and He will never give you more than you can bear!” I paid for my purchase and was off; I looked for the mom in the parking lot as I wanted to say a few words of encouragement to her and tell her to cherish her own daughter, but she was already gone. Somehow having people come in and out of your life for even a few short moments can really make you think! This one really stunned me! 

I talked to my husband everyday on the phone and sometimes by Email when I was in Florida-I have never been away from home or him for this long. I felt like I was on this continuous vacation; but talking to this young mother and cashier was a reminder of how precious life really is! Enjoy your own life and cherish those around you while you have them!  

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