Last week was not stellar for the Silva's. We woke up Sunday to a massive ant invasion in our lovely apartment kitchen. We also found out the the sellers of the house we want to buy were going to fix exactly nothing that came up on our inspection report. I have gotten lost a bazillion times in this town. By lost, I mean "45 minutes out of my way with two kids in the car" lost. We didn't have health insurance yet despite Steve working on the figures for the last month. All of those things among others made for a not so great week. The newness of KC had started to wear off. The smallness of our apartment had started to wear us down. And none of us had anything to wear because our washer doesn't like to perform on command. Ha! Get it?! I used "wear" in all of those sentences.
Stick with me here folks, I'm in a bit of a punchy mood today...laugh or cry...it's a teeter totter right now. I could go either way.
So, I loaded the kids into van on Wednesday and took them on an adventure to Deanna Rose. This farmstead actually holds some pretty good memories for me. It's changed some since the last time I was there. Colin and Cam had both been to Deanna Rose as babies. Of course, they don't remember, but the day after I was let off of bed rest while pregnant with Cam, I went down the slide with Colin at Deanna Rose. An hour after that, I was in labor. Kind of a neat memory, don't ya think?
Fast forward to our day...we're at Deanna Rose and my boys want to do the "Pan for Gems" feature. You buy a bag of sand/rock mixture. Sift it through the sleuth of water and find your treasure trove of gems and minerals. My boys are Colorado rock crazy boys so this was right up their alley. Since we didn't have to pay to get into Deanna Rose (it's free during the week) I decided to spring the $9 for the rocks. We walked up to pay and a woman was walking away without anything in her hands.
"Now what does all of this have to do with a girl named Jenna?" You might ask yourself. The woman that just walked away was Jenna's mom. She had just paid for the next two kids that came up to buy a bag of rocks. That was us! We were the lucky winners! Seriously, this type of stuff never happens to us. After the the kind of week that we had...what a blessing. How kind. How thoughtful.
But wait, it gets better. I hollered, "Thank you" to Jenna's mom as she walked away. She gave me a quick wave without even turning around. So off we went to find our gems. About 3 minutes later...the woman walked back to the gem mining area and asked if she could take a picture of the boys and post it on Facebook. I said sure, although I thought maybe it was a bit strange. I told her that her generosity touched us because we had just moved here and had been through a pretty rotten week.
She handed me a little slip of paper with some chocolates taped to the back. After reading that little slip of paper, I got schooled on what a bad week looks like. I looked up with tears in my eyes as Jenna's mom said, 'My daughter, Jenna can't come to do these things right now but it's so nice to see others enjoying the day." After that, she practically skipped off with a smile on her face and joy in her heart. What a woman! What a mom! What a graciously kind, thoughtful, God-filled woman.
Here is what the note said:
1st Annual Jenna's Day of Kindness
Jenna was diagnosed with leukemia at 2.5 years old on August 15, 2011. Each year on August 15th, Jenna's family and friends will perform random acts of kindness to celebrate the kindness shown to her family in the months after her diagnosis.
Share your kind act or how a kind act affected you :
Jenna's parents plan to compile a book to give Jenna on her 16th birthday.
I just got schooled on "hard days and bad weeks". Ugh. After sobbing uncontrollably, I took the time to explain to the boys what had just happened. They seemed pretty sensitive to the fact that our hard days were nothing compared to what this girl was going through. This little girl that we didn't even know had cancer. Her mom was out on the anniversary of her diagnosis spreading joy and smiles (literally).
We decided right then that we would pay it forward. I have been waiting for the right opportunity and one just popped into my email in box. I got a note from the school saying that they were looking for volunteers for Harvesters (a local food bank packing warehouse). You can be as young as 6 to volunteer with a parent. Guess who just signed us up?
Jenna, it was so nice to meet you. I hope our paths cross again someday. We will be praying for you and for your family. You have no idea how you have touched our lives through your kindness.