Monday, February 25, 2019

The Kindness of People

Since Earl and I sold our house to move to France, we have so often been reliant on others. It's not something we would have anticipated, that we would need to mooch off of people, whether staying with them after we sold our house or on our trips home, or getting their help in France when dealing with the paperwork.
It's often hard to accept things from other people. It puts me in mind of a song from church:
"Will you let me be your servant, 
let me be as Christ to you? 
Pray that I might have the grace
 to let you be my servant, too."
It's that second part that can be so difficult. Sure, I'm happy to help you out, but maybe it's harder to be humble and accept the help from others. Well, this year has taught me to accept the help of others, and I'm always so grateful. 
Recently, my friend Deb handed me a key to her and Greg's house in Columbus.
Deb and Greg took us to a hockey game on New Year's Eve. 
"It's lightweight and easy to travel with," she said. "Take it with you and whenever you're in town, you can stay here, whether we're here or not."
The lightweight key
And those words were so sweet, so giving. People open their homes and their hearts to us, without necessarily expecting that they'll one day fly to France and stay with us. Instead, they're just caring people.
The same can be said of Jules and Jack, our friends in France who welcomed us when we returned without a place to live. 

We'll probably camp out there again after the housesit in Italy until we move into our new apartment on March 15.  

My Mom and Dad welcomed us for more than a month when we came home for the holidays. We like to think that we were helpful, doing chores around the house and taking turns cooking dinner, but it's always a challenge to have house guests. 

And our friends Linda and Maurice in Paris have numerous times helped us, from loaning us their car to selling us their car, to putting me up on a last-minute trip to Paris when I didn't reach another friend's home in time to make their son's 25th birthday celebration. I contacted Maurice and Linda while I was on the train and they pulled out the trundle bed in their dining room. Such giving people. 
Dinner with Apero spritz makes everything better
And the people I've mentioned here don't begin to cover the support I've received, from late night/early morning phone calls when I'm stressed about life in a foreign land to a niece who got Grace's prescription filled after she broke her elbow and I couldn't be there to do it for her. 

So, in the past year, I have become the kind of person who relies on the help of others more frequently than I could have imagined. And I'm hoping that I have received their help and expressed thanks for their support adequately, and if I haven't, then thank you. Grace, Najah, Noreen, Pam, Sheila, Leah, Erin, Kevin, Dawn, Jennie and Dennis, along with everyone who reads my blog, encouraging me not to give up, but to be honest about my experiences -- thank you.
And I hope that the people who have offered us a hand know that we will happily reciprocate, and when it becomes our turn to help them, that they can turn to us and ask. Because just like it's okay to give, it's okay to receive, too.


Just Me said...

Another beautiful post, clearly from your heart.

R's Rue said...


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