October 6, 2010

Gratitude Reminders

"Hey Miss Sarah,” his familiar voice echoed before he appeared in my door. Slipping my shoes back on my feet, I spin around in my chair to greet him. “It has been awhile Joseph,” I smile and say as I look him over. “You look good!” I say to my surprise and his, and he does. A buzz cut crowns his head and a littler more than stubble accents his pink colored lips. His eyes beam clear white and he skin is clean with a sun kissed glow. He looks good.

I question him about his seizures, and social security, and drinking, and medications. He smiles and answers about each topic. He then begins to tell me about the poison ivy he was recently exposed to. “You know I have moved Miss Sarah. I moved from living under the bridge to a tent. When I was clearing out my area I got the poison ivy.” I make the appropriate I am sorry face, when really I am covering up my own emotion.

He continues, “I have a nice tent, four sleeping bags, more clothes than I need, a coffee pot, and a solar shower. Oh yeah, coffee too.”

I smile and ask questions. I truly am interested and excited for him, yet in the back of my head I see the granite countertop kitchen with stainless steel appliances in the house I recently looked at.

I drift back to the conversation, as Joseph is explaining to me how his solar shower works. “And if you just heat about a gallon of water that is enough to keep the shower warm. I get wet, turn the shower off, soap up, turn the shower back on, and then rinse off.” Again my mind takes me out of the conversation to the burning hot shower I lingered in this morning.

Our conversation then turns toward the photos in my office and I can tell he is ready to leave. “Well Joseph, it seems like you have had a few good months. It is good to see you. Keep me updated,” I reply. “I will Miss Sarah,” I hear as he walks down the hall.

Gratitude reminders.

I will be the first to admit that I have been blessed with a lot in my life, but I have also worked hard, and learned some things the hard way, to be at this point in my life. Yet I will never take for granted all that I have.

Gratitude reminders. We all need them from time-to-time.

Thanks Joseph for my gratitude reminder today.

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