Words? They seem so simple, yet they hold within them immense power. There is power in them to break a soul and power to bring one out of the deepest pit. They can shine a light or brand us with a label that seems so hard to take off.
I have been told many things in my life that will always be with me. Words that have had to be forgiven, even if an apology was never offered and words that I have returned to in order to help me through rough patches. The following story is one of the brighter ones and the first thing that came to my mind when I read this post topic (the fact that it won out over others made me smile). Too often I remember words that I wish I had never heard.
These words were told to me a long time ago, back when Ty-man (my nephew who is now 8) was only about two and looked kind of like this...
Andrew and I had him one night and we all went to dinner at Chili's. We ate and talked and played. There was a family sitting in the booth next to us (a man, woman and preteen girl). When they got up to leave the woman walked over to our table and said "Excuse me, but I just wanted to tell you that you are a wonderful mom. You are so patient with him." I think there was some other stuff in there but that first sentence had captured me to the point that most of the other stuff has gotten fuzzy over time. I am not sure what led her to say that but that was the best compliment anyone could have given me. Even though he is not mine, and I never know how to approach the "oh thank you but..." when someone tells me what cute kids I have, my young, child-loving, all-I-want-to-be-someday-is-a-mama heart was very blessed by her that night. I was going on twenty at the time (and probably looked much younger, because this aging thing hadn't caught up to me yet) so she may have just been wanting to give a young mom some praise but hey I will take it. At that point in my life I had a one track mind. My plan was to finish school, get married (mainly with the thought of children in mind) and then have children right away. Though life has taught me to slow down and embrace being free for a while and learn to love my husband well, someday I know I will pull from those words when I have an infant crying and a two year old screaming, clinging to my leg and I will find comfort in knowing that somewhere out there is someone who thought of me as able to take it all on.