Update: I was volunteering at the Lima Center today, April 24, 2015 when a familiar face walked in. I knew I had seen this woman before. I thought I had seen her at the Lima Center. I even argued with the sister insisting the woman had been there before. I later found myself having a conversation with the woman when it clicked. I remembered I hadn’t seen her at the Lima Center rather I met her at KFC many months ago. She was surprised I knew remembered everything about her. I shared I had been so touched by our meeting so many months before I had even written about her. Jennifer is still homeless but she has a fighting spirit that is so inspirational. I ask today and every day to continue to say a prayer for Jennifer. May the lord bless her life like she’s blessed mine. The chance I would run in to Jennifer again were a million to one. God works in mysterious ways sometimes.
I made it through my infusion yesterday. Actually it was not too bad. The big thing was the port. For some reason I haven’t been able to heal from it but it’s better than having needles in my arm so for that I’m grateful. I did feel a little nauseated but no big deal. Today I meet with the radiation doctor to go over my radiation treatment plan. My son, Derek, has his senior project coming up on December 20th. Skyler and Kaydren, my 2 older kids, are buying me an airline ticket to go home and be there to support Derek. I’m hoping after meeting with the doctor today, I’ll be able to tell my kids I can stay through Christmas but I’m not going to complain if I can’t. I’ll just be grateful for being home on December 20th. It’s been the pits to have to go to all these appointments by myself. Today’s appointment will be no different. I’ll be going by myself. I sure wish I didn’t have to go this alone but who knows, maybe it’s Gods plan to make me stronger. Normally I’d feel sorry for myself and be asking for prayers but today I’m not going to. Instead, if you’re reading my blog I’d like to ask you to pray for Jennifer.
Last night I drove to KFC to get a combination meal for Ron and I. It’s been pretty rainy here in San Francisco so I wore my hat and my Napolean Dynamite snow boots. I was waiting in line behind a woman who was placing her order. She took a while but I didn’t think anything of it. I was singing along to all the music that was playing on the radio in the restaurant. After this woman placed her order she walked by me and smiled as she went to sit down. I placed my order and as I was standing there waiting, one of my favorite songs began to play. It was Drift Away by Dobie Gray. I love the song! I was singing away. This woman had gotten up to get her order. As she walked by me she smiled and then stopped and stared at me. I was a little uncomfortable but she looked at me and said “you must be really happy”. I looked at her and chuckled and said “I’m not sure about that”. The woman said “well you’re singing so you must be happy”. I replied with a smile on my face “I just love this song. It’s one of my favorites!” This woman said “well life could be worse. My friends for instance are struggling financially thanks to the economy now they’re fighting all the time”. We began having a conversation. She went on to share she had been born with low platelets and had to have blood infusions. As she was sharing her story I noticed her teeth were all black and broken. She wasn’t homeless or anything but suddenly I had this pit in my stomach and my heart was aching for her. She shared that the infusions weren’t too bad. She experienced achy bones among other things but she got through it. She went on to share that she was trying to get her social security disability. She was hoping she’d get her retro check before the holidays. She told me that when she did, the first thing she was going to do was buy a reliable car and drive across the country to her home in South Carolina. She wanted to go home to be with her kids. She said she missed them so much. When she said this my heart sank and I felt the tears roll down my face. I asked her what her name was. She said “Jennifer”. We shook hands and I told her my name was Velma. I told Jennifer I would pray that she’d get her disability check in time for Christmas so she could go home. She looked at me and said “I hope so. I miss my kids”. Ouch! I understood how she felt. I miss my own kids and am hopeful to be with them for Christmas, however it was at that moment I realized that Jennifer was right. I feel sorry for myself a lot but it’s true, there are others who have it worse. Jennifer was a reminder of how blessed I really am. I drove home with a pit in my stomach and a lump in my throat. I also found myself praying not for myself, rather for Jennifer. I could barely eat when I got home. I woke up this morning and I couldn’t stop thinking about her.
My appointment is at 2:00 today but for some reason I’m not worried about it. I have faith things will work out. My prayer today is for Jennifer. The stranger I met at KFC whose story captured my heart. I’d like to ask that we all say a little prayer for Jennifer today. Prayer goes a long way. We all pray for a miracle. I’m guilty of praying for one every day but just for today I’ll be taking time out and instead of praying for a miracle for myself, I’ll be praying for the miracle to happen for Jennifer. I’ll never know if my prayer is answered and neither will you but God will and so will Jennifer.
My song today is Drift Away because as I listen to it today I’ll think of Jennifer. The woman who reminded me to be grateful and always remember that life could be worse. There’s always someone out there whose struggles are harder than mine.