The month of October has been a very ego-friendly one for me. As we waited to deplane after our week-long trip to Connecticut earlier this month, an older woman reached across the aisle and pushed a small, folded slip of paper into my hand, saying, "Don't read this until later."
I took the paper, smiled, and said thank you, then turned away and shoved it into my back pocket as I cringed. I was sure the woman had overheard the verbal vomit I tossed at my husband as we boarded the plane earlier that afternoon. I was stressed out about Kel's eating schedule (or lack thereof) and Mo's noticeably missing naptime, plus I had just whacked several unsuspecting passengers with Mo's large carseat as I stumbled down the aisle toward four open seats. I got frustrated and said at least as much to the CDR.
It was several minutes and two diaper changes later when I finally remembered the note in my pocket. I pulled it out and mentally prepared for the harsh criticism that was certainly hidden within. My eyes filled with grateful tears as I read these words:
"A word of appreciation for your parenting style. It has been a pleasure to share Gate 2 and this flight with you and your family. Your youngsters are fortunate to have such a skillful and upbeat mom! --a Grandma"
I must have looked like the biggest idiot as I wandered through the airport toward baggage claim with a mile-wide smile plastered across my face. That smile didn't fade for at least three days.
Then, just a few days ago, I found myself living a scene straight out of Grey's Anatomy. I was riding a very crowded elevator at Pike Place Market with three girlfriends and several strangers, one of whom was a handsome young guy wearing a skullcap and an old canvas coat over faded blue jeans. He had bright, sparkling eyes, and I found myself glancing sideways at him more than once as the elevator made its slow descent. But I wasn't the only one looking. He was looking at me, too. I glanced back once more as I stepped off the elevator. We locked eyes, then he winked as the doors closed on our moment.
To my elevator man, wherever you are, thank you for making this harried, married mother of two young tykes feel like an attractive young single girl again.
In deep gratitude for these two beautiful moments, I have decided to go all Haley Joel Osment on the world and Pay It Forward. By the end of this year, I will try to make one fellow mom and one handsome fellow feel the glow that I have experienced this month, the glow of feeling appreciated for who I am and how I look.
And to all of you, my readers and friends, I hope you get the glow soon, too. Wink, wink.