It was startling to learn what you did, sitting there. It was mind-blowing to watch someone so normal, so typical, so everything that didn't match them to the words they were saying. It was humbling. There were a lot of tears shed by both men and women because it was a room of real humanity. I was reminded of a bible verse about strength being made perfect in weakness, and strangely enough, I think I understood it for the first time ever.
To be honest, the whole time was nearly surreal. I watched with empathy and sympathy, understanding and awe, and even began to understand why peoples tears were as they were. I began to understand why tears and fears were only one letter apart. He said, "What about you, Andrea? What is it that you want to share?"
And I was startled at how quickly my own eyes welled up and a lump came in my throat. I said that one of the positives was my family's kitchen table, and how many times I had been nourished there - physically, mentally and spiritually. How we sorted so much out on a beat up table that sat atop a wobbly pedestal. How there was always a place there. How no matter how much bigger and roomier the living room was, it was the kitchen table and chairs that had rubs of worn spots. And all of a sudden I was so thankful that I couldn't hardly breathe. Suddenly so much nonesense made sense and there weren't enough words to put into perspective the blessings that my life held and how even the ruts in the roads flushed themselves out to be something that would eventually marvel me. How life was suddenly beautiful.
Because everywhere I looked there was someone who was hurting over something - but they chose to put one foot in front of the other. They moved... sometimes slowly... sometimes sideways... sometimes tossed around by a harsh wind that caused them to bounce. But they managed. Finding strength. Fortitude. Ability. Sanity. Salvation. Putting aside and starting fresh. Kitchen tables.
I am blessed beyond measure. I am standing still and giving thanks. Because I can. And I should. And I will.
"I believe the second half of one's life is meant to be better than the first half. The first half is finding out how to do it. And the second half is enjoying it."