One of the most tremendous blessings RLB gives me by being our family's provider is the gift of time. Most of the time in my day is discretionary. It's gotten even more so as my children have gotten older and have become my underpaid housekeepers. I manage to consistently fill the time in my day but what remains lacking is stress. There is a lot to talk about on the subject of stress free living and time management. First and foremost is the precious availability I have to to be guided by God. To do what He needs me to do, when He needs me to do it.
My shopping is done during the day time and one to two days before payday. It was a great priority of ours many years ago to get at least one month ahead financially so payday would not dictate our behavior. Yesterday wasn't a grocery shopping day, it was one of those everything else besides food days. I needed to get some lights to finish my Christmas decorating. Colored lights for the tree and white lights for the outside of our house.
Walmart had the colored lights I was looking for but not white lights. It was really strange. I understand the powers that be are trying to change our lighting desires by forcing these LED and awful florescent bulbs our way (part of the grand conspiracy to make everyone's life miserable, I'm sure, taking away our soft yellow lighting and replacing it with the disturbing and unhealthy white flickering light. Take them away you bastards! I'll switch to candles! - but I digress).
I searched everywhere and was quite baffled that I could not find one box of the white miniature lights that I use. The next store my daughters and I were going to was the Exchange on Post to do some Christmas shopping. Our Exchange is split into two buildings across a parking lot. The smaller building has the home and garden merchandise where I was now detoured to check there for white lights. As I pulled in my daughter asked what we were doing there. I explained I still need to find white lights and I had to use the restroom. They were already tired of shopping so this extra stop was irritating them.
While I was in the restroom, an elderly woman in one of the stalls started to have what seemed like a stroke. I heard her struggle with the door and then fall back on to the toilet. She was cognitive enough to unlock the door so I was able to get in by her. I asked if she was with anyone. She told me in a slow, broken voice that her husband was in the truck in the parking lot. I helped her into a position so she wouldn't fall and rushed out to get my daughters to help me look for a grandpa in a truck.
My youngest found him and we ran to him. I explained what was happening and showed him to his wife. She was blacking out and having a lot of difficulty moving her arms and legs. I called the paramedics and stayed with the two of them until help got there.
The girls and I went on and found the white lights. As we were leaving the store, the paramedics had the woman on the gurney and were headed out the door. I could tell the woman had now lost consciousness. I prayed for her, her husband, and their family. We got into our truck and after I closed the door I looked at my daughters and said, "So this is why Walmart didn't have the white lights."
This realization hit my oldest daughter intensely: "That is so weird, Mom! It's kind of creepy."
No darling, it's beautiful.
I used that opportunity to talk with them about keeping calm and not questioning when things don't go our way. When we're delayed and tempted to be frustrated we need to keep in mind there may be a larger plan underway.
I became overwhelmed with emotion and tears later that night as I told RLB all that had happened. We talked about how it is likely God was able to use me to unite an elderly Veteran with his 85-year-old wife for what may have been her last moments.