‘Tis the season to be jolly. At least until you run out of fa la la la la la la…
At this point in life, I can fully empathize with those who suffer through the holidays.
Personally, I normally try to fight through my pain. I don’t want to be that guy who is always a mess of wildly fluctuating emotions. Letting myself have an old-fashioned cry isn’t my default choice.
But there are those moments when the only way forward is found in entering the emotional minefield. I am doing that now by sharing with you a part of my story only a few haver ever heard…
Several weeks before October 10, 2011, we started a Christmas layaway for the boys–mainly Casey and Cole.
After October 10, 2011, one set of items was no longer needed.
Unfortunately, this store did not understand my dilemma. They did not have any available mechanism or procedure to cancel part of the layaway or separate the items no longer needed.
There are some things in life you cannot avoid. Like I said earlier, sometimes the only way out is to go through it. And that’s what I did. I had to purchase the entire layaway and then separate all the individual items and return what wasn’t needed.
I feel sorry now for the poor cashier/checker who had to serve me, but not then. Not then at all. I was so full of anger and pain combined with a weird kind of tenderness. Cole never touched any of those things, but somehow they were still his treasures and worthy of a bit of respect.
I lost a piece of me that day. In many respects, it was like pouring salt on an open wound.
Why am I telling you this? This story is a sacred place for me. Hopefully sharing it will encourage you to have empathy for those who struggle during this time of year.
The best gift you will ever give cannot be bought. Give others the gift of patience, love, and acceptance. Show them the arms of Jesus. After all, tis the season to be the reason the people around you experience love.
Thank you for being my safe place too.
Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. (1 Cor. 13:7 HCSB)
Blessings to all,
Les Ferguson, Jr.
Madison/ Ridgeland, MS