There are a lot of things that can stop me in my tracks and me feel every bit vulnerable and emotional. There are the typical things, a song, a moment in time, a sad story, a happy story, a Folgers commercial…okay so I’m one level of stable above that – but in general you could classify me as one of those people that get moved by things.
I can be very cynical, and real too. In fact, one of my favorite past times is getting together with my close friends and just having those call it like we see it kind of conversations. Many times this may involve some serious shit talking, but hey, what are friends for.
The Saturday after Thanksgiving, I took my child, loaded up the mom car and picked up the grandparents to hit up the local Chuy’s parade – kids giving to kids. If you don’t know what Chuy’s is, look it up and figure out a way to get a hold of the jalapeno ranch. You can thank me later for changing your life. The concept is genius, it’s a toy drive where kids bring a gift to the parade and fill the beds of Chevrolet trucks to the brim, for other kids.
Brooklyn is too young to get this but we headed out with our Play-doh gift in hand anyway as I wanted her to just experience the scene and see the floats. I mean we’re talking Macy’s parade runner up floats here -look at the enthusiasm! 😉
So the motorcycles kick it off, we’re clapping, dancing, waving, and the crowd is collectively enjoying it. Kids everywhere, smiling, feeling every bit of that magic of the holidays. We were near the front of the parade and I noticed that one of the next floats in line was a group of men and women representing our troops. Suddenly it just seemed like the entire crowd shifted focus and it was no longer about the parade, the kids, the toys, but it was about stopping to honor our heroes. As they made their way down the street everyone stood up, waving, cheering, and clapping. I have no idea what came over me as this is the behavior we should see in one another but it’s like I felt this wave of gratitude hit everyone at once and it completely got me. It could have turned into a big ol’ sobfest, hot mess, but I held it together.
It was one of those had to be there moments, but I suppose that morning I woke up vulnerable to feel everything. It was just nice to see literally everyone on the same page for one small moment in time, appreciating, giving thanks, and feeling every bit of grateful for what these people have sacrificed. All political bullshit aside, it was about gratitude. Spend a minute today and be grateful for something.