I'm Thankful To Be Alive

She looked over her shoulder. Her eyebrows were pointed downward as she waved to her grown son to buy his groceries and stop talking to me. She looked embarrassed by the things he was saying. But I wanted to hear him, I wanted my boys to hear him. His pain was real. He was a grown man living the reality of his consequences. "Why can't that man talk mommy?" Before I could answer my son, the man interrupted and said with mumbled words, "It's okay, I don't mind talking about it. I was in a motorcycle accident and I got a head injury from it. When you choose a certain lifestyle sometimes you have to live with the consequences." And then, with weary eyes, he looked at me and said, "My wife couldn't stay married to me because of what happened." My eyes welled up with tears. All I could say was, "I'm so sorry." Then he told me I was beautiful, gave me and the boys knuckles, and left the store.

Sometimes I wonder what the person next to me is going through. Some physically show their scars, while others bury them deep. You don't know they're there until you spend some time with them.

I left the store today feeling inspired by this man. He wasn't complaining or trying to ruin our day, he was just sharing a piece of his life with us. During our conversation he showed the boys his scars on his legs and he told them, "I'm thankful to be alive!"

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© 2014 Natalie Falls