The conversation took place at Goodwill (I love Goodwill). A woman was there with 3 adults who had obvious developmental disabilities. They were having a great time, shopping around, talking and laughing a lot. And yes, I might have been following them around because one of the ladies had Down Syndrome and that's what I do... I follow people around that have Down Syndrome (especially adults).
Here's a little of their conversation:
Lady with DS: When is Easter?
Caregiver: In the spring sometime.
Man: It's in March or April, when it starts getting warm outside.
Lady with DS: What day of the week is it on?
Caregiver: I don't know that either (and yes, she WAS the caregiver and yes, I WAS shocked that she didn't know what DAY Easter falls on... but whatever)
Man: Do you remember Shelly that used to work with us? I went to her house last Easter. I know I did. It was on a Sunday and I went to Shelly's house. You know? She used to work with us?
Caregiver: No, I don't think I know Shelly.
Man: Oh, well I know Shelly and I know she would remember me. I know she'll never forget me. She was so nice. She'd never forget me.
How sweet is that? He just knows that Shelly would remember him and never ever forget him. They celebrated Easter together. That's what made my heart melt... the obvious and true happiness that Shelly brought to this man's life.
Then reality hit.
Shelly had most likely moved on. She didn't work with them anymore and perhaps she DID remember him but not as vividly or fondly as he remembered her (and yes, of course I could be totally wrong on this but it sounded as if he hadn't seen her in some time and we ARE talking about reality here).
The conversation brought back a memory of my 6 week post partum check up at the doctors. The doctor asked how Josh was (after she apologized that he had Down Syndrome again... she had apologized already on the day of his birth, a few times actually). I told her that he really was no different than my other babies at that age... ate, slept, pooped and cried. She said that yes, that's how babies with DS are... so cute... but when they reach about age 5, society just doesn't see them as cute anymore. Society sees them as a burden (yes, she actually SAID that).
Will Josh be a burden? Will he have a Shelly in his life? Will Shelly celebrate Easter with him and then never see him again because she's not paid to do so?
I hope that Josh always has love in his life. I hope that all of my kids all grow up to love and serve God and to love and be loved. I hope they smile every day and, maybe more importantly, I hope they make others smile.
A friend posted this verse on her FB this morning and it couldn't have been more appropriate...
"I have told you these things so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world." John 16:33
This world is cold and hard (and seems to be getting colder and harder every day), but God is bigger than this world. God is bigger than Shelly.
Oldies but goodies!
They sure do grow fast!