Groceries and Grace
by Victoria Hottle
I’ve been thinking about the terrible things that are going on with my family, the people I dearly love…those I care about the most in this world. There is little I can do for any of them except pray or perhaps send good karma their way (which I do habitually) I try my best to move forward each day.
I planned a trip to the grocery store today in preparation of a family gathering that begins tomorrow. I haven’t slept well lately…worrying about things that have happened and feeling guilty. I was dreading the grocery task, but I moved forward.
Fifteen minutes in the store, five minutes in produce; I’m frantically shaking the plastic bag to corral the asparagus. Three shakes… the bag still unopened, and I stand helplessly watching the two rings on my right hand soar. Mind you, not just any rings, but rather a silver ring with X’s that my Mom bought me years ago and her gold wedding band.
Try to imagine an old lady (in produce no less) screaming “my rings my rings”.
A lovely woman rushes past the asparagus, the bananas and who knows what else only to pick up the silver ring as it took its final spin. As she placed it in my shaky hand she asked if I lost anything else as she saw two things fly through the air. I, almost in tears at this point, said “yes my Mother’s wedding band”.
This complete stranger immediately began looking under produce, moving freestanding carts… searching for the ring. I finally thanked her and told her I was sure she needed to get back to her shopping and get home. This relentless woman continued the search and found my Mom’s ring!
So as you’ve guessed, we hugged, and both cried. I doubt I‘ll ever see her again, but will always remember her and the gift she gave me today was not so much the rings, but the message that I don’t have to do something huge and I can’t change what has happened, but I can do kind and thoughtful things for the people I love (and even those I don’t know) and hope it makes a difference.
So I’ve been thinking…instead of dreading the trip to the grocery store, I might start going more often.
Victoria Hottle resides in Richmond, Virginia with her husband and dog Henley. Although she doesn’t write often, it’s always from the heart.