Small Acts of Love: A Story of Friendship
This is a story of friendship.
It’s about the love and beauty of the people in our lives who rise when we fall, or move when we are stuck.
What you need to know so this will make sense:
My child fell from the top of a 15′ tree. It was one of the most horrifying moments of my life. I was flooded with panic and confusion and had only seconds to act. About 1,000 times, I have replayed the image of him hitting the ground while I was just steps away. Miraculously, he walked away with only two fractures in his hand.
There is no better comfort than a true friend to steady you. Thankfully, I had one with me that day. We shared the emotional burden together. It was not her child who fell, but she was right beside me trying to catch him. She was scanning his body for bleeding and bruising while giving him sips of water. If she hadn’t been there, I would have still taken him to urgent care and the end result would be the same. But because she was there, I was given a gift I never would have imagined.
The next day, I came home to find a gift bag hanging on my mailbox. Inside was a small jar of pinecones and a card that read:
Sometimes, when I can, I keep something tangible from a big event to remind me that 1. it happened and/or 2. it’s over and behind me.
So I gathered some pine cones from the branch that rode down with Parker. It was a terribly high fall, in spite of which – he is safe, he is whole.
Small acts of love, friends. Small gestures full of huge heart and beauty. This is how we add value and meaning to the existence we are sharing: take the time to share acts of love. I don’t just mean gathering “something tangible” (which, I need to note, is amazing and I am totally stealing the idea!) but simply making an effort. Not just thinking the thoughts, but DOING. Putting your love into action. When I showed Parker his special pinecones, he beamed and said, “I am going to save these for when I am a daddy and I will tell my kids the story of the time I fell out of a tree, and I will show them these pinecones.”
Alea took something awful and gave it beauty. Thank you, friend.
A note about Alea:
I think it is important you know, that aside from making traumatic situations poetic, Alea is also a Warrior Princess. She is one of those unshakable moms who I look to for examples of peaceful parenting. I have seen her a few times when things were getting pretty bananas and she never raises her voice or gets flustered – it is remarkable! Alea is also one of those people who could calmly save 50 people from a burning building, while wearing 2 kids on her back and leading everyone in song. Once they were safely out of the building, she would scavenge for greens and hunt squirrels to roast on a fire she made out of an environmentally friendly diaper. I am pretty sure the character of Katniss Everdeen learned everything she knows from Alea. When the zombie apocalypse happens, I will be seeking protection at her house. She is also one of those women who has had three children and could still rock the cover of Sports Illustrated’s swimsuit edition. But you cannot hate her for this because she is also hilarious, smart, passionate and brings your pinecones when your kid falls out of a pine tree.