Tonight as our long day came to a close I stood by the front window and gazed at the houses on our block. Wondering if they were warm and cozy at home. Three houses down there is an older couple who we rarely see. They come and go and wave occasionally, but they aren't outside much. This morning while I was shoveling I saw the man come out and attempt to shovel but then he went inside. If I wasn't completely overwhelmed with our shoveling and my two little helpers I would have wandered down to help out. We have very generous neighbors that usually help them out so I wasn't too worried. But tonight as I stood and watched their house, as dusk fell, I saw them close their front window blinds (I of course wondered if they could see me gazing at their house).
I thought about what they were eating for dinner. I pondered the quiet that they enjoyed. But realized quickly that they probably also miss the pitter-patter of little feet or hustle of having older children coming and going.
I thought of the people in my life who have moved on to enjoy the quiet evenings. I thought of my Grandpa and I felt glad that he is in a place surrounded by busy-ness. People coming and going, companions to eat with, and yet the peace to think about life. I thought of Ed's grandma and the independent life she lives at the age of 91. Still enjoying and thriving in her own kitchen, next door to her sister. And then I thought of my Great Uncle Chuck. He lost his wife this past August and I wondered what in the world he was doing this evening. How did he spend his day? What did he eat? So I called my mom and she gave me his number and encouraged me to give him a call. He is a talker and would be easy to chat with.
I called and as I hung up my shoulders felt lighter. My heart was bursting from knowing that I made his day but also - I felt better knowing that he went out to lunch today with a "fellow" who picked him up in his car. He measured the snow and was happy to find that the seven inches he measured agreed with the weather newsman. He cleared his driveway with his tractor. He is on a mission to talk to the people at his church about my Great Aunt Ellie not being mentioned in the bulletin, and he got a call from a niece in Mexico. He is a busy man...and he didn't eat much for dinner because he went out for lunch.
Not even 5 minutes after hanging up - my phone rang. It was my grandpa. He just called to say hi. They also got snow and he had liver, onions, and a piece of cake for dinner. He gave his friend his bowl of tomatoes. He has a new record player because the needle on his old one broke. He. was. good.
These two phone calls took less than 10 minutes out of my life, yet I know they will sit with me for many days. I admit to thinking about calling people but in a world of email, text messaging, facebook, and other forms of social media - I forget. I forget about those that I love that aren't connected in these new ways. I forget that picking up the phone and actually talking to a good friend does wonders for the soul (thank you Jessie).
I challenge you to not just think about it - CALL, WRITE, or go VISIT!
Make someone's day! It will make yours.