Blaike jumped in the Hummer Wednesday and told me that she had been thinking...she wondered if it would be ok to NOT go to grandma's for dinner on Thanksgiving. instead, she wanted to go to the shelter and help serve. hmmmmm...wonderful idea, however, i wasn't sure if we would be able to do this...we talked with Lyle and decided we needed to make a phone call first to make sure volunteers would be ok...then we saw on the news that there was a church cooking 1500 Thanksgiving dinners that needed to be delivered Thanksgiving morning...off we went! Blaike even got up at 6:30 am with NO PROBLEMS! why can't she do that on a school morning???
we delivered dinner to 5 families. i'd love to tell you that it was a wonderful experience but i can't...you might want to skip this paragraph...the first house we went to: had a brand new HUGE blow up snowman in the front yard [at least $50} but couldn't afford dinner...the cynic in me was a little dubious...not to judge, but come on! we wished them Happy Thanksgiving and the man just looked at us and shut the door. second house: 15 year old girl answered...we wished her Happy Thanksgiving and she said "huh" and shut the door....so far, i'm not feeling a whole lotta love here...third house: they wouldn't come to the door...UUUGGGHHH! on the way to the last house, we saw a man dressed in garbage bags, standing on a corner with all his earthly belongings in a few boxes next to him. Blaike begged her dad to give him some money...ever the cynics, we agreed to buy him breakfast at McDonalds. poor man...he definitely had some mental issues that need to be dealt with but he prayed for Lyle. the last house: wished the man Happy Thanksgiving and he did the same, wished us a Merry Christmas and blessed up for bringing dinner...what a great way to end the morning! re-ignited my faith in the human race! plus, we still made it to our family dinner...although the whole family wasn't there...one sister in law and 3 kids and one brother, his wife and son were missing but it was still a nice dinner and afternoon...although we did miss those that weren't there.
now, i'd love for you to read this story:
The Family of 4
By Blaike Koca
Hi. My name is Blaike Koca. I am sitting in an airport. Dallas Airport to be exact. I am watching the crowd hurry by. Trying to make their flights. I am smiling and waving to the unknown strangers. So silent they are, but so much is said in their silent passings.
This is a true story, but a different setting and different names. A family of 4 is what I would call it, but you may name it differently.
I am going to Florida. Orlando, Florida. We are at Gate D28. I am sitting here watching the crowd go by. So silent but so much is said by their silent replies. I see people from different backgrounds, religions and races. I greet each and every person with the same respect. But there is this family, they stick out from everyone else. They stand out in the crowd of hundreds of millions people.
It made me cry. You see, daddy was leaving. They 8 year old daughter, dressed in her pink camouflage. Baby boy in a baby carrier, dressed in green. Everyone’s eyes are swelling up with tears. They were taking daddy to his gate.
The daddy stood there, holding onto them tighter than ever, mommy, daughter and son. You see, daddy was dressed in green, green camouflage, brave and ready for battle. Heading to Iraq. As I write this, tears come to my eyes.
Have you ever looked into someone’s eyes? Could you tell what they were thinking? Mommy’s eyes said “Baby, I love you!” Please hunny, don’t go!” The daughter’s eyes said “Daddy, who is going to tell me my bedtime story? Who is going to tuck me in at night?”
The saddest thing a person can see without even knowing the story. How can people walk by like it’s no big deal? I just think to myself “Does anyone notice? Daddy is leaving!” Have you ever been in public and seen someone in a military uniform? Do you walk by like you’re afraid to say something? Ha! I don’t, I go up to them and shake their hand/hug them, tell them thank you, you be safe and I pray for them every night before I go to bed. The thing you will never forget is the look on their face when you tell them that.
So when you are somewhere and you see a hero in the military TALK TO THEM! They are the ones that keep this country free and protected. And one day I will be that hero you see that is walking down the street.
My message: When you see a hero in the military, talk to them and thank them. Pray for them.