A Curious Monday

Drake Birthday Party with Taylor and Trey

Lighting was terrible and phone battery was too dead for flash!

Hello Friend,

I am very interested in knowing how your Monday fared.  As you were out and about today – running errands, shopping, doctor visits, etc – were you aware at all of any difference in the people you came into contact with?

In so many of the comments to posts during the last five or so days, I’ve mentioned many times of how I, even more than normal, am being conscious of watching for opportunities to be a positive influence in our broken world.  As a confirmation that I wasn’t imagining differences, there were four instances today where someone else other than me instigated a positive moment.

To start my day, I arrived at LabCorp for blood work.  As I sat down to wait for my turn to be called, I dug a book from my bag and found my place.  Before I had gotten through the first sentence, I heard a gentle voice say “How are you today?”  I am most always aware of my surroundings, so I knew that myself and an elderly black man were the only ones in the room.  As I looked up, he said “I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to interrupt your reading.”

I closed my book and he and I had a wonderful conversation of how our grass gets cut in this scorching heat, which led to him revealing a wonderful story of how the son of his best friend, who had passed away last year, takes care of his yard.  We ended up talking about how blessings come around through the most unexpected places.

Both LabCorp women that I came into contact with were black women.  The receptionist and I were laughing over the wording of the orders for blood work – and the woman who actually drew my blood was ranting to me about how the cleaning crew fell behind in their duties over the weekend – “Please tell me you can’t smell that dried blood in the contaminated waste bucket!” she emphatically said. (She most definitely was right!)

I stopped at the grocer on my way home and as I headed for the car, there was a young black boy, I’d say 12 to 13 years old, sauntering through the parking lot.  And come on now, who of us didn’t saunter at some point or another at that age?!  I know he saw me, like I say – I’m always aware.  I didn’t acknowledge him any more than he did me.  That is, until I backed up and started to pull away.  He then turned around, smiled, and waved to me.

Folks, this is not a normal day.  I know that gentle man made an effort.  I know those two women associates at LabCorp made an effort.  And that young boy practically had me so stunned that I almost stopped the car.  And I had spoke such bravado!  All of them, as the day is ending, opened my eyes that I’m the one whose got to try harder.  As I go out each day, I’ve got to wait until I get home to stick my nose in a book and look up and around me while I’m out in the world.  I feel almost like a young child whose been caught doing something careless.  These people taught me that just talking about it with a good intention doesn’t cut it.  They showed me with their kindness that I now have another reason for being aware of my surroundings.

The picture above, and I apologize for its lack of clarity, was taken at a birthday party I took my granddaughter to on Friday evening.  That’s my granddaughter and the birthday boy in the picture.  They both attend the same summer camp and both were ecstatic when two of their favorite counselors, pictured here with them, showed up to skate.

Children, unless they are taught to do so, do not put the color of a person’s skin in the determining factors of whether they like that person or not.  That’s just a statement – this is not a post about racial differences.  The people I’ve mentioned above, yes, were black.  But for the first time, I can honestly say without a doubt that I saw these people today just as my granddaughter does, without regards to the color of their skin.  And at the same time, I think it’s entirely possible that they saw me the same way.   And they were the ones to step out and make a difference.  I’ve been humbled today, gratefully so.

99 thoughts on “A Curious Monday

  1. I loved this account of your day, especially the little boy who turned around and waved. So totally unexpected. I too, try to be friendly to those around me and like you I carry a book with me. But where you think you failed, I say you didn’t. You put your book down and had a conversation with the older gentleman. You were kind and courteous to those nurses or lab techs, and I’ll bet you smiled or waved back at that boy.
    There are days when I try, and days when I give up, but it’s never giving up for good. I’ll be back the next day trying again. And I believe we can make the difference. Each one of us. We can turn this world of hate and self centered people around by being the salt and light of the world.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thank you for your kind comments. Yes, I see that you’re right – it wasn’t a total failure on my part since I did lay my book down to talk with the gentleman. But, it was definitely an eye-opener that HE was the one to initiate the pleasantness in the midst of my choosing to turn inward with my book….it was a tremendous learning experience for me and one I look to try to ‘pay-it-forward’ in return everyday now. I am happy to speak with you, my sister-in-arms, as we boldly go forth in kindness – such small acts make such major differences in the lives of those touched.

      Like

  2. I absolutely LOVE this post. I too try to be very aware of people and my surroundings but alas, I fail at the job some days. What a wonderful thing to share! I truly believe everyone is effected by the spirit of the person they are near…more than they realize. When you have such a positive life force, people are naturally drawn to it. I try to be that positive energy also. Thank you for giving us a glimpse of how a sweet word, kind gesture and positive thought can bring such rich reward! We should all listen… ❤

    Liked by 3 people

    • Thank you, Courtney. I’m becoming even more aware of how hurried we all go through our days also and I’m finding so many times that that hinders me from actually seeing the person in front of me ‘as a person’ instead of just someone whose fulfilling whatever need or want I have at a certain moment. I am consciously trying to slow down and see everyone as someone with cares of their own….and that slowing down in and of itself is a blessing almost beyond describing!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Beautiful blog post. I know exactly what you’re saying. So much unrest and bitterness, but in spite of it all, I believe God is getting ready to do a new thing in this country — maybe even the world. That’s where our awareness is coming from. I really appreciated what you had to say. Thank you so much for sharing.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. As I read the post, I was just thinking that we go about our day not knowing what people we are going to intercounter.. I will be the first to say that I treat everyone the same until the treatment is not given back to me.. I don’t look at the color of the skin and decide that they are different, I usually base my opinions on the attitude and the treatment that I am a given.. Smile, be present and enjoy life to the fullest because now days you never know whom you encounter that will snatch all those great things away based upon the color of your skin, the profession that you are in or even your gender.. I thank you for the post and hope that you continue to have great days ahead.

    Liked by 2 people

    • You hit the nail on the head for something i struggle with. I, too, treat each person with respect and a bright smile – and then feel guilty for the anger I feel when they respond sometimes even with a sneer. THAT is what I am dealing with right now, trying to figure out the best way to deal with those things. There is a person who cleans the offices at the company I work for and I make an extra effort to speak to her everytime I see her. I hear her talking pleasantly with other people, but to me she truly turns her nose up and refuses to acknowlege me. I wish I knew why – but I’ve just had to let it go….Our skin colors are different, but to me that has never made one bit of difference…just bothers me greatly.

      Like

    • Thank you, Cynthia. In spite of the horror across our country and others recently, I am finding a renewed hope as I interact with strangers during the days. If we find we haven’t learned from such horrible events going on, it is a very sad state indeed. I am so happy to be finding the opposite over and over again.

      Like

  5. Hi Tammi, so nice to meet you and thank you for taking the time to visit my blog and become follower. I have so enjoyed my visit here and I loved your post. God talks to us in so many ways and many times through others. Thank you for sharing this. What a blessing it has been to visit you.
    Have a wonderful new week. Hugs!!

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thank you, Southern DayDreams! Yes, even in the midst of all the bad, God shines through and leads us on to where we can stand again and shine ourselves to His glory!

      Like

  6. Tammi,am glad I have found you here.. such an inspiration u are.. besides totally loving ur blog, u have cleared up my doubts on whether are there people who are unbiased and non judgmental.. I believe God created everyone in His own kind,who are we to judge ever.. looking forward to ur posts..Thanku much..Lots f love n prayers.. sty blssd .. sty happy 🙂 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  7. very well written post! ironically, we all wish for a world without discrimination yet address people by the color of their skin. i just hope that the day comes when the word “black” is replaced by a word that probably mentions their country/descent/ancestry.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Thank you for this. It’s thought-provoking and positive. You opened my eyes, as yours were opened, to what I could be doing every day to help our country heal. I’m going to try to act like the wonderful people you described as much as possible until it becomes more of a habit with me.

    Liked by 2 people

  9. It’s my hope that starting with Millenials and younger, children will grow up seeing people as people, not of color, from a certain ethnic group, etc. and now, because there is so much interracial dating, I feel even more encouraged. I grew up in the North, but have now spent more time in the South, and lived for a time in Montgomery, Alabama. While I expected to encounter a great deal of racial bias in Alabama, it didn’t happen. I met African Americans and Caucasians who had marched together, Judges who had handed down barrier breaking decisions, and yes, I did meet George Wallace, in his wheelchair, who was very charming and extremely intelligent…sounds like an oxymoron to describe George that way, but it was true….now he did have a wrist watched that played Dixie every 15 minutes……Having been raised in a home where every life had value, and a 26 year sales career, I have always spoken to everyone…sometimes to the embarrassment of those who are with me. But they get over it, because they know that’s part of who I am and I consider myself blessed to be able to be outgoing. Good for you. You are going to continue to meet amazing people!

    Liked by 2 people

    • What a wonderful comment, Skyler – worthy of a post unto itself! I especially took to heart “sometimes to the embarrassment of those who are with me” – That’s where I see differences the strongest in my circle of associates. It’s not embarrassment that I feel from them, it’s a look of distaste directed at me. My hardest battle is then fought at not lashing out in anger at them. I work daily in an environment with a lot of executives, so I hope you get my meaning. It is infuriating.

      Liked by 1 person

      • One of Mama’s friends once remarked that if Mama was your friend, she was your friend for life because she is so loyal. Mama is thinking that your associates may not be worthy of your loyalty. Mama does make mistakes regarding people, however she fixes it as soon as she discovers her error (by blowing them up with one of her hand grenades…we can teach you how to do that should you so desire…it’s all in the wrist, once you get the pin out with your teeth. ). Mama is well known for her hand grenade tosses……SB

        Liked by 1 person

        • I love this!!! You so made me smile! I wish I could tell Mama that I’d do better and get out and find me a more suitable employer, but this one was a blessing to have received after our jobs went south in 2008. Now the benefits have me locked in so I fight the battles here daily – mainly to hold my temper, yes. But I’ll remember the grenade next time I have to grit my teeth – and throw it mentally – with honor from Mama! Thank y’all!

          Like

  10. Tammie, I’m moved emotionally by your posting and it is hard for anyone or any form of written communication to cause this effect. After 27 years this retired law enforcement professional and military veteran. My heart is filled with renewed hope as more American’s acknowledged the racial problems with verbal interaction and written correspondence, such as this posting and others you have written. 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thank you so much for your kind comments. I understand, from a general citizen’s standpoint, what you mean. I was hoping to hear more of these occurences happening and if you read thru the comments on this post, you will see a few. And like you, I have been coming across others. I feel a type of hope that I don’t remember feeling before – not even after 9/11 actually. And please allow me to thank you for your service in protecting us for those 27 years you gave to doing so. Even though there is so much we need to work through on so many levels, I am and forever will be grateful, regardless of any and everything, for the men and women who put themselves out there everyday to keep us all safe. From the bottom of my heart, thank you.

      Liked by 1 person

  11. I worked a 12 hour day on Monday. In the evening I spent almost an hour having a very intense and frank discussion with a student, a young African-American man, 17 years old, who had come to my office to tell me he was going to drop out of the summer program that was mandatory for him to complete to matriculate in the fall at the highly selective university he was accepted to. He said he felt like an imposter, that his inner city shitty high school hadn’t prepared him for the academics, that he was afraid of student loans and not being able to find a job after college because he is black and society doesn’t value him therefore. It was probably the most honest conversation I’ve ever had with a student in all my years of working in higher education. When he left my office, I broke down in tears. I’m pleased to report that after sleeping on it he has chosen to stay in the summer program and attend university in the fall. Hallelujah!

    Liked by 5 people

    • Thank you, Joanna. Nice to meet you – yours is among the most attractive blogs I’ve came across – and I love how you use scripture as the basis. I’m looking forward to reading more!

      Like

      • Thank you so much. I’ve been changing things a bit to make it easier to use and see what’s on it. Your thinking it is attractive is a good help for me in knowing I’m moving in the right direction. And Scripture is so important in knowing God more and I want to share Him with others. I’m looking forward to getting to know you more as well through your blog.

        Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks – and I had second thoughts about how that came across after I posted it. Labcorp s a very clean facility, but once she mentioned what the smell was, I couldn’t wait to get out of that room!

      Liked by 2 people

  12. Great post. I think all of us, black or white or purple, are trying harder to let others know that we are not like the hatemongers who are grabbing all the media attention. Folks of peace and love are seeing opportunities to be brilliant in a drab, disgusting world.

    Liked by 3 people

  13. I have had days like this that reminded me that I need to raise my head and really look at people and acknowledge them. I often stay silent, but appreciate when someone else approaches me and starts a conversation. I always think I’ll do that more and not stay so enclosed in my own little world, so I appreciate this reminder.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Yes, you’ve hit my meaning exactly! I was getting reminders all day long yesterday loud and clear – so far so good on today! I hope you have a great one yourself!

      Like

  14. What a lovely post, friend. My son was born and raised in the deep south, he does not see color—as in peoples skin color….. since we moved up here to western NY–how the social changes are…..you thought the deep south had manners, no ma’am….the north has it beat. I guess it all depends on where one lives and how one adjusts to the different climates/changes etc. Like I always tell him, you treat people the way you want to be treated…it might not always be returned, but you always, always remember how you were raised. Especially when living in a small town where everyone knows everyone and their business, just saying, wink.

    Liked by 5 people

      • I think the opposite, Tammi….not sure about the younger generation appreciating anything…I see it all the time in school…I think morals and values have to be taught and learned…just look at what’s going on…I think the differences are becoming more pronounced, unfort.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Interesting. As I and then my daughter grew up, we attended public schools. Now there are the charter schools, of which my granddaughter will be returning to next month for her 3rd year – 2nd grade. It is phenomenal to me to hear and witness the depth of knowledge they are teaching in only the first grade – and behavior ethics are being taught alongside as well. In NC, public schools are now following suit with many of the same patterns. I’m a strong believer in education working hand in hand with parents to instill morals and values. If all of this could catch on nationally, instead of in little pockets of the country here and there, the trend would turn.

          Liked by 2 people

    • Yes, I feel that way at times, too. I was my Mom’s caregiver until she passed away last August. Now, most evenings I spend alone – and getting more and more used to it. I’m actively trying to make myself get out more just so I WILL stay more connected.

      Liked by 1 person

  15. Sounds like you came into a bit of an awakening. Your mind seemed to expand to accept more details of the world around you, and made peace with that. You must be really adept at accepting change, and like Debbie L. said above, it’s a time to break down barriers. All of us have them. And we’re being called to take down our walls. For some, like you, this might be easy, but there are a lot who are struggling with it. A little kindness goes a long way in times like these.

    Liked by 5 people

    • I have came across quite a few, both in my day to day dealings and here in blogland, that are struggling. The sad part about that is that many of them are so demanding and defensive that they do not even know that it’s them in the midst of a struggle. And it’s frightening to think what it would take for something to get through to them.

      Liked by 1 person

  16. I am a born South African. I can agree with you that race awareness is acquired and also that I dislike it. There is a gem hiding in most people. It is my habit to be friendly towards all, be it well-heeled executives or janitors on suburban trains, doormen at hotels, cleaning staff in public toilets. It costs nothing to be received by a friendly stranger.

    Liked by 4 people

    • Yes, lessons learned. Somehow, above all, I learned that even though I would previously have touted until I was blue in the face, if I’d had to, that race has never been a factor for me – those four people who reached out to me today have made me think again. Maybe I’ve not been as innocent as I’ve thought I’ve been. I’m on my knees tonight asking God to show me more of the error of my ways.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Me too. We need to be praying for PEACE for the upcoming conventions….Dear Heavenly Father. We need Your supernatural presence to reign over these two upcoming conventions, for Your Peace that passes understanding. I pray the ordinary people rise above politics and just show love and respect to each other and to our democratic and political process. We need you Lord. Forgive us of our sinful nature that centers on ourselves. Help us see You in each other. Heal our land, return our hearts to You! In Jesus name we pray. Amen

        Liked by 4 people

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s