Friday, April 18, 2014

Did You See Me?

Did you see me today? I was the crazy lady with a baby strapped on the front and a death grip on her toddler's wrist. 

If you don't live in Baton Rouge, or weren't at Town Center, let me paint you a picture. 

I took Harper (almost 2) and Cy (3 months) to return some things. At an outdoor shopping center. Without a stroller. I didn't think it would take very long so I let Harper walk, holding my hand of course. Well, holding my hand lasted until she saw the accessory rack right inside the door. I tried to quickly pick out my exchange items and get in line. And then the person in front of me had a complicated transaction... At this point Cy was letting me know he was tired (read: crying) and Harper was licking a hanger and I was beginning to sweat. The second store was similar except it included Harper running through the store with little boy shoes and then taking off her own while I questioned my intelligence.

But it was in the second store that someone saw me. 

I was checking out while Harper emptied our shopping bags. (Have I mentioned yet that I will not go shopping without a stroller again?) As I began to gather our things and the kid, a woman said, "my, you have your hands full." I smiled and replied, "yes, ma'am, I do." She smiled, too. And then she said something that almost brought me to tears. 

"Can I help you with anything?" 

She saw me. Crazy mom without a stroller and a toddler with only one shoe on. She looked at my chaos and then offered to help. I was so grateful. A complete stranger was loving me. 

And it made me wonder, how many people have I not seen? How many chaos moments have I walked past without even noticing (or worse, caring)? And how can I love people if I'm not even seeing them. Maybe it's a stranger at the grocery store who needs help with their bags or a friend dealing with a significant loss or a marriage crisis. I want every person in my reach to know that they are seen, but more importantly that they are loved, right where they are. Because everyone needs more love and I have it to give. 

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