Wednesday, December 10, 2008
This, I believe, was from 1999....
I left the house this morning not especially filled with the Christmas spirit, and headed toward the mall for something I couldn't remember when I got there. I plodded through the crowd in embarrassingly dazed circles, but not really caring much. I caught a glimpse of myself in a store window and while noting it was a particularly bad hair day, I heard an old woman's voice say, "There you are!" Her excitement started me, but I recognized her instantly.
Several years ago, while working at the mall on an unusually slow morning for December, I stepped out of my store and stood where the old woman had a kiosk set up to sell gold chains. She asked what I was doing and I said, "Just enjoying the Christmas music." She mentioned that she especially loved The Mormon Tabernacle Choir at Christmastime, and we chatted briefly until we both decided we should get back to work! Later that day, while shopping, I saw a bin of 99 cent cassettes in the drug store. I thought of the woman and searched the bin for a tape of The Mormon Tabernacle Choir, which I found rather quickly. The next day I handed her the tape on my way to work and her sad, old eyes filled with tears. "You don't know what this means to me!" she said, and I didn't.
She then told me of her son who had been killed many years before, shortly before Christmas. The only time she could have a funeral for her one son was on Christmas Eve. In spite of her unbearable grief, she was able to take some comfort in listening to the choir. She told me she always thought of her son when she heard The Mormon Tabernacle Choir sing Christmas music.
"I still have my tape!" she exclaimed presently. "And now when I listen, I think of you too!" This time is was my tired, old eyes that filled with tears, and I left the mall a smiling, sobbing mess .... and still didn't care! My 99 cent gift to her six years ago was repaid to me more generously than I could ever have imagined! I will certainly never forget her, even if I don't hear the choir! Hopefully I will never know her sadness, but I will forever be thankful for her joy!