“Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.” — Hebrews 11:1
Today was a special day.
I had lunch with Care Bear at school, and then I gleefully fulfilled my duties as guest reader for C’s kindergarten class.
Carys has been so excited all week – she couldn’t stand the suspense.
I kept hearing “Is today the day? Or tomorrow? Which day!?!?“; a constant little loop of a conversation.
She picked out the books she wanted me to take to school – and then changed her mind a katrillion times. Or maybe just three times. But it felt like a katrillion.
It was a sweet moment. And I made so many new little friends, too.
It also opened my eyes. I’ve been so worried about how affectionate Carys is.
Don’t get me wrong – she’s a sweet, caring, delightful little girl. But, sometimes, I think she’s a little too friendly. A little too quick to hug & kiss EVERYONE.
But today, I discovered many kindergartners are that way.
I’m not raising a Little Lolita, after all.
That, by itself, was a great day.
Then afterward, it was a normal day for me.
I ran some errands.
Checked off some items from my own honey-do list.
Picked up some groceries.
Got home and unloaded everything
I then made my way to the mailbox.
It was raining.
Not fun. I almost decided to wait until tomorrow to check the mail.
I convinced myself there was nothing but bills and offers for free trial gym memberships.
And those can wait another day. Or skip themselves to the trash. Either option was fine with me.
But I finally checked the mailbox.
Amidst the junk mail, I instantly saw an envelope from Social Security.
And then another.
There was an instant knot in my stomach.
My perfectly fine, perfectly normal, perfectly good day came to a crashing halt.
My stomach ulcers started to revolt.
I pulled both envelopes to the top of the pile.
And thought for a minute.
Would they really send me TWO denial letters?
Well, yes. I bet they would.
And really? It has only been about 3 weeks since I turned all of the paperwork in.
The letters were probably requesting more information.
Or denying us benefits.
Or … whatever.
It was too early for good news.
I’ve never been one for surprises. And those little envelopes had a shock inside.
Could be good. Could be bad. I had no idea which.
After nearly fifteen seconds that felt like a mind-jarring eternity, I couldn’t stand the suspense any longer.
I tore into the heftier letter first, convinced it was chock full of information for filing an appeal for a denied application.
Imagine my sheer surprise -and instant gratefulness, humility and thankfulness- when I read the opening statement.
“Dear Chad L. Lanford,
You are entitled to monthly disability benefits beginning May 2010.”
You cannot imagine the weight that disappeared from my heavy shoulders. In an instant.
I almost ran back from the mailbox.
Mostly because it was raining.
But also because I wanted to scream, yell, hoot & holler (that’s what Southern girls do, after all)!
I got teary eyed, just in time for Cailyn to see.
“What’s the matter, Mama?”, she asked.
“Oh – these are happy tears, baby!”
She hasn’t heard of happy tears. Or at least, not recently enough for her to remember.
Oh, were they ever tears of happiness!
Tears of tremendous joy.
Tears of frustration solved.
Tears of anxiety remedied.
Tears of sheer thankfulness.
Tears of gratitude for a prayer I prayed too often in the last few months.
I know so many of you have been praying for our family, and for Chad specifically.
I thank you. Each and every one of you, for the prayers you lift up for our family.
God hears us!