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Thursday, August 8, 2013

Spontaneous Moments & Unexpected Consequences Part I

I am once again in a situation where I need to be reminded of all the wonderful, unexpected moments that occur in my life.  These moments of inspiration allow me to grab a rope as I dangle from a precipice so I can pull myself up.  First a little back story:  Two months ago, I announced to my three children that we would go to the park.  It was a Saturday.  My plan was to take them to the playground so they could burn off some excess energy .  My five-year-old, Sebastien, excitedly told me, "Mommy, let's go to that big park by Walmart."  I hadn't thought about going to Tremore Park, but something told me that we should go there. 

I had originally thought we could go to Rhyne Park, closer to home near their school.  It was not meant to happen.  So even as storm clouds threatened to release their burden upon us, I ushered my three pumpkin-headed monkeys (a term of endearment I coined just for them) into our mini-van and proceeded toward our destination.   Minutes later, we pulled into a parking space and I released my little wild ones onto an unsuspecting playground.  Several other parents had the same idea.  We all hoped the rain would wait while the children unleashed their pent up energies. 

As I watched my "free-range" kinder dash from climbing walls to swings to monkey bars, I noticed that the nearby covered picnic pavilion was buzzing with activity.  It looked like a family had reserved the space for a celebration - a birthday perhaps.  Several adults made a path from their cars to the pavilion with large, covered aluminum pans filled with food.  A grill was started and soon the aroma of cooked burgers and hot dogs filled the air.  Someone decorated the pavilion with balloons and posters.   My stomach grumbled.

In my haste to get the children to the park, I had forgotten to eat.  I could handle that.  What I feared was that the heavenly scent of fresh-grilled meat would reach my always-ready-for-more-food children and the whining would ensue.  I held my breath and waited for the moment one of them would come to me and begin the litany of "Mommy I want a Happy Meal, I am hungry, I need something to eat, etc..."  Usually this was released in the style of a Gregorian Chant - only more annoying and much less relaxing.  Anyone who is on a tight budget can attest to the fact that there is nothing happy about a "Happy Meal."  It's way too expensive, not very nutritious, and the toys are usually a starting point for terrific arguments.

Turns out I didn't have to wait very long before one of the kids asked when we could get something to eat.  The drizzle of rain and the requests were simultaneous.  I decided that we'd wait a few minutes since my children wouldn't melt or waste away anytime soon.  During my wait, a young man from the picnic pavilion walked over to me and handed me a post card style invitation.  That buzz of activity wasn't a birthday party.  It was a Book Signing for New Author and Publisher A. Adams Jones for her book "Blind Innocence."  The gentleman invited me and others on the playground to attend the book signing and enjoy free food.  Wow.  I had a choice to make.  Should I go ahead and  meet the author?

I had no money with me that day.  We were between paydays and I needed to take the kids home to cook dinner.  The rain was beginning to come down with more intensity.  I waited to see if anyone else would go first.  But nobody stepped forward.  I am not the most outgoing individual, but I do have three very entertaining and confident children who often "force" me out of my comfort zone to do the unthinkable.  And there was that opportunity to feed them right there.  I took a leap of faith and walked over to the author and introduced myself and my three children.  I learned that her book was based on a true story and I found myself drawn to her kind spirit as we spoke.

A.Adams Jones took time to talk to me and to my children as a videographer documented this stop in her book signing tour.  For some reason, it touched my heart and gave me hope that I too could write about my experiences in a way that might encourage people and help them through rough times in their lives.  She was encouraging and even gave me a signed copy of her book with an offer to call her if I ever needed to talk or pray.  I was especially grateful for the book since I had no funds with me at the time.  My children were so comfortable around everyone that they ended up making friends, eating well, and having another great family moment to add to their history.

That day was significant in many ways.  It jump started my interest in writing about my own trials as I struggle to raise my little family, forgive past transgressions, and move forward spiritually, emotionally, and in my career choices.  I never could have foreseen how that day would impact future decisions. My "inspirations" ultimately caused me to lose my job and end up stranded in another state with my three children.  Yet I am convinced there was a purpose behind the events on that day.  Next posting...Consequences and Resolutions.  You don't want to miss this one!

 UPDATE:  May 26,2016
In honor of the author who inspired so many changes in my life three years's a re-post from 2013 PLUS links to this author's books and video synopsis.
 Blind Innocence