The people that you meet when you’re walking down the street…

Deaar Angel Gabriel,

It must have been last fall. I was walking home from somewhere . My angle was off by just enough at the intersection of Oxford and Monroe. Without realizing it, I was veering into traffic, away from the tell-tale truncated domes marking the safety of the other side of the street, the last tactile hurdle on my trek back to the house. It wasn’t snowy or windy or rainy. There was no particular reason for me to be “off” my game. I just was.

And there you were. On your way to wherever. Witnessing and willing to take the time, offer your arm, do the right thing, ensure a stranger’s safety.

You had seen me there at Starbucks several times , chewing the fat with the girls over a tall blonde or soy latte. You were a medical student and fascinated by my cheeriness and chuzpah. We lived in the same neighborhood and you’d seen me walking through it over the months. But we’d never spoken. Never even smiled at each other. You just knew I needed a hand and were willing to extend it.

And so I was the recipient of the random act of kindness we all hear about. IT was fifteen simple paces from the middle of the street to the other side. That was all you thought you were doing but you were very, very wrong. Because here I sit at least six months later on a lazy Sunday morning thinking of the gift you gave me that day. The messenger with the good news. That there are still good people in the world. That the millennial generation isn’t full of selfish, myopic narsicists. That wherever I go in this world, God watches and protects me. That it is okay for me to make mistakes and not okay to lose the courage to try to live as independently as possible. That it is okay for me to accept help at times. That I have friends I don’t even know. In fifteen paces and a 30 second conversation and handshake on the far side, you unwrapped this timeless present. And as I walked away, nervous but ready for the home stretch of my walk that day, I saw with the eyes in the back of my head, you watching me, propelling me with prayers and well wishes back to my own front door. . For all of this, Gabriel, I thank you. I hope this finds your ears and eyes and that our paths will cross again someday- hopefully not in oncoming traffic!




Dear Readers,

This is an experiment in courage and gratitude. It is a dedicated space for me to express my appreciation for the thousands of people who have held my hand along life’s journey. It can be a place for us to begin to post our random and intentional gratitude to the people we encounter over the years . People we never had the chance to thank properly. People we’ve known for so long and so well that the last thing we would think of is to write them a letter. While I will be posting from my own experience, I hope this can become a forum for you to do the same. We can deliver joy to a person so easily. It only takes a few moments and a little courage.

I should have a bottomless pit of material, as I continue to live the same way I eat lobster, sucking the meat, marrow and juice out of each and every part- that is, if I continue to live rooted in gratitude and open to the less obvious lessons life has in store for me. Looking backward and forward, this will give me pause to reflect on those who’ve been instrumental in bringing me to this point, to this person I am today- filled with love and ideas and thankfulness. There is no dearth of inspiration, other than the possible shift in my attitude! And, who knows, maybe you will be the recipient of my next letter! Stay tuned!