• Thursday, December 11th, 2014

I want to tell you about something that happened today, something that shattered me, not in a bad way but in a way that will allow me to move forward. While I’m doing that I will tell you a little about where I’ve been this last month

November was a tough month for me.  I ran in an election, I was the incumbent and I lost, it was close, but I lost.  To understand what this loss meant, you should  know that I am passionate about what I do. I am one of those people who gives it all when I do something.  I believed that it is an great honour and a huge responsibility to be elected. I gave it my all. I grew to love the people and their straightforward, no nonsense way of letting me know what they wanted and what they didn’t want.  When I ran for this position initially I knew I wanted to do the best job I could at representing the people so I chose to make this my career.  I put myself out there and ended up serving on regional, provincial and federal committees and organizations, doing this because it gave the region a voice at various levels of government, this was a win/win for the area. Like I said, it was my passion, it was who I was and the loss hit me like a sledgehammer to the gut or more like a sledgehammer to the heart. It has left me reeling. Being a single mom of a teenager in a small community that has 1200 people out of work makes it feel even more harsh.

What do I do now? How will I afford to raise a teenager? Advocating for people is my life and when you are voted off the Island, there doesn’t seem to be any other land in sight. People keep telling me “When one door closes, another door opens” but there is this period of time when all the doors are shut and it is very dark and that is where I am now, looking for dry land in a very dark place.

Now, it may seem that I’m taking this opportunity to tell you about what is  wrong in my life, but please bare with me…I’m simply laying the foundation for what happened today.

On Sunday, I left for Saskatchewan to pick up my mom (who had knee surgery), she wanted to come stay with me and she wanted to come right now.  It is a bad time of the year to be travelling but sometimes you drop everything and go. I knew that I could also visit my dad who is in a long term care facility just outside of Saskatoon but it had to be a super quick trip.  I had to take my daughter out of school so she would get the chance to see her Grandpa and my second youngest daughter also decided to come so she could see Grandpa.  Like I said, bad time of year, rushed trip, 28 hours of driving in three days, and in case you haven’t figured it out yet, a person who really doesn’t want to make the trip.

I admit that I have been feeling a little sorry for myself about the state of my life…no job, a child to support, a father who has gone downhill very quickly and a mom who needs taking care of. By the way…Local Government representatives, Mayors, Councillors, Directors, can’t collect EI if they are not re-elected, so that has added to the panic of not having a job.

So we drove the 14  hours to Saskatchewan, The next day I visited my Dad, shopped for things he needed, had a birthday party for him and then headed to the hotel so we could be up by 5 AM to pick up mom, cram another body and luggage into the Jetta, and drive the 15 hours home.  On the way home we decided to spend the night with my daughter in Grande Prairie so my mom could have a break from sitting in one position.

The next day, before leaving for home we decided to splurge and have breakfast/lunch at Cora’s in Grande Prairie. Now this is the part I wanted to tell you about.

We had a lovely meal and when we went to pay for our food the waitress said, “it’s been taken care of”.

I said, “I’m sorry, I don’t understand”

and she said,  ”Santa took care of it”.

I, the master of words, looked at her and said, ” I don’t get it”.

She looked at me patiently, smiled and said, ” There was a gentleman in here who paid for  your meals.”

I, again not grasping what had happened said “why?”

She explained that she didn’t know why, he just did.

I don’t know why this hit me so hard but something inside of me shattered and as I stood there, the tears started flowing….I was a mess.

I said, “Please, if you ever see him again. Tell him thank you, this meant more to me than he will ever know”.

I have to admit, it was uncomfortable being on the receiving end of such an amazing act of generosity.  It humbled me and made me realize so many things about myself, things I won’t bore you with.  It keeps going through my heart and my head, “how did this person know that I was having such a rough go of it?” “Why us in a restaurant full of people?” I guess I will never know.  What is important though is something shattered inside of me because of this.  I’m not sure what it is but every time I think about what this complete stranger did, those things that were blocking my joy and making me focus on myself rather than others seem to be breaking off.

What I am left with, once the feeling sorry for myself is scraped away by a stranger’s act of kindness, is a rawness that will heal eventually.The quote below says it better than I can…
So, stranger, if you are out there and happen to read this….Thank you from the bottom of my heart. Your random act of kindness made a big change in my life.









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4 Responses

  1. 1
    Beth J. 

    First, let me tell you how disappointed and sad I am that you didn’t get re-elected. I’m shocked, and can’t imagine how the voters could give up your hard work, intelligence, passion, and honesty.

    This story would be very moving in itself, but when it is put in the context of what you have gone through in the election, in your uncertainty about a job and a source of sustenance, in your drive to help your mom and visit your dad, the story of the wonderful act of kindness shines like a beacon. Thanks for relating it, and I am so thankful that you were the recipient of unexpected joy!



  2. 2
    Fred J 

    If you have faith and pations it will always work out. This great act could not have happend to a better person , thanks for sharing because your sharing will keep helping others
    God Bless you

  3. 3

    Thank you for your comments Fred. I am just staying positive and knowing that I have the most wonderful people in my life and things will be ok. All the best in your new ventures as well.

  4. 4

    Thank you so much Beth…if you hear of any work please let me know. I think I can do most anything other than finance and possibly rocket science :) Have a wonderful Christmas with your family my friend.

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