This subject of Sacred Connections remains very alive for me on a daily basis as I move around the world and was particularly poignant earlier this week.
On Sunday morning I had an amazingly beautiful time with two women I have met again and again but not really known. They work in a hotel I stay at and both have impaired hearing. We have always been smiley with each other and use sign language (very primitive sign language from me – very elegant sign language by them), but on Sunday morning they came and sat at my breakfast table, bringing with them a pile of paper napkins and a pen.
We then spent about half an hour or more sharing things about ourselves. Our names first of all; where we live; where we come from; what we like; Very simple things but with such joy from all three of us punctuated by lots of hand holding across the table, hugs now and then and enormous smiles and excitement. This beautiful approach, instigated and prepared by them, gave me such pleasure – and them too – on a day that was leading me to a funeral of someone close to me and many painful exchanges.
And I wondered why then. What was it that made that morning right for this when we have ‘known’ each other, but not known each other at all, for over ten years? The memory has stayed with me and I’ve felt nurtured by it and I’ve wondered again and again how much longer we have really known each other these two beautiful women and me. I’ve been in awe of them and those moments when they took time and courage to come and sit with me, a guest at the hotel, and coax me into sunshine from the deep pain I felt that morning. Did they see my pain? Did they know me from so long ago that they loved me enough to come and help, to rescue me? Did they even know what joy they would bring?
Beside me as I write is my share of the paper napkins with their names written upon them. Their home towns. Their ages. They will continue to be so special and sacred for me – the women, the napkins and the memories of that half hour that fortified me for the rest of a painful day.