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Thursday, March 25, 2010

Big Scary Stranger... Thanks for the reminder

Dear angels thanks for sending me a reminder...

I was driving in downtown Waterloo, Ontario today and I stopped randomly to go to a comic book shop to add a gem to Wyatt’s collection. When I got out of the car I was approached by a great big dude dressed all in black who needed a shave amongst other things. He had a kind of broken smile, removed his hands from his pockets and held them out in a very non confrontational way and said “can I ask you something? Um… can I just be really honest with you?” I said of course. He went on to explain that he had just been released from prison yesterday, he possessed only what was on his person and was more than a little lost and in need of a number of things. He never actually asked me for any one specific thing, but I gave him some money that I had in pocket and then we walked for about 45 minutes and talked. I think that is what he needed the most. I told him I had been through a bit of a crazy year as well and that I had learned a few lessons in that time. He asked what those lessons were? First, forgive yourself but don’t forget what you have been through. Second, surround yourself with good people and good situations and follow your instincts when you feel otherwise. We continued to walk and talked a while and the third thing we arrived at together.

We spoke a little about what he needed and where he was headed. He mentioned a woman that he loves but who he is not in good favor with currently. He mentioned a couple of kids that were his and how badly he wanted to be in their life and he mentioned a few health issues that he had that would likely continue to cause him trouble in the near future. He had obviously had some rough times in his life, he inferred that his childhood was less than awesome, and that he had some things he felt regretful for and mentioned that multiple things from his past nagged at him consistently. I suggested that he focus more on what he can be doing today to take him in a good direction and then that he try to gently push those hard and ever present emotions aside, be honest that they are there but to quickly return to what he can be doing to move forward in a positive direction. He was a big and potentially intimidating dude, so I suggested that he get some clean “happier” looking clothes, get back to the halfway house and have a shower and get cleaned up and then to go out in the world feeling better about being clean and alive. That’s when we came up with Our third thing. He needed to find public health, and some source of moral support and a job; we agreed that he should... show up on time, smile and be clean and then vow to himself to do as many good things as he can to earn his and others faith and respect in himself. Seemed like good advice for anyone.

If he ever reads this, my message to him would be…

Big unshaven fella, in the black hoody with the spikes on it; with a good heart and a boat load of baggage: you have a somewhat clean start and a lot of opportunity to change your life for the better. Chip away at life, one good decision at time and then one day at a time and so on. Earn back respect in yourself, focus on that big heart of yours and listen when it speaks to you, the respect of others will come in time and will be earned with consistency and love for yourself. Thank you for stopping me on the side of the road and reminding me of a few good lessons about life, and most importantly, how fortunate I am. Take advantage of your chances, life is long and forgiving if you let it be.