I am touched by many in so many ways. Random acts of kindness make indelible prints on my heart. Gifts of time do not come with fancy paper and ribbons, but they are more precious than gold. My daughter gave me such a gift yesterday. She had asked to meet me in town (her brand new, low-slung car would have difficulty on our rutted roads) and we went to a restaurant that has particular meaning for me. We rarely have the opportunity for mother-daughter visits these days and I treasured every minute. I got to go for a ride in her hybrid vehicle, amazed at the cockpit with all the bells and whistles and the fact that as we went through town, the car was using no gasoline whatsoever. Who'da thunk it?! Our time together passed all too quickly and it didn't matter that someone might wait for her parking space as we hugged goodbye.
My parents were not huggers. Always kisses hello, goodbye, and goodnight, always on the cheek, but not much touching otherwise. I was interning while in college when I meet a woman who kept a hand on my arm while talking, who hugged at every opportunity. It felt a bit strange at first, but I decided I liked that affectionate contact and we became best friends. Our children were the same ages and we spent a lot of time together over the years. Later, when I consulted in a number of convalescent hospitals, when I had occasion to be among the patients/residents I made it a point to stroke, hug, and kiss. I'll never forget the woman who told me with tears in her eyes that "I don't get many kisses anymore." My own children recognize the value of touch: brother to brother and to sister, they hug and kiss each other - and me!
Deb and I exchanged gifts of another sort yesterday, the ones we'd forgotten at Christmas. She got the jar of buttered rum mix and I got the ritual box of See's candy given every year in my dad's memory, as well as presents for Celeste and Ralph (Bessie Anne had already received hers). Deb and Craig gave the cats a tiny, furry toy mouse that emits a real mouse squeak when moved. Ralph and Celeste were in ecstasy! They batted, chased, and rolled until exhausted. The cats slept well last night.
There are those who might say I'm "tetched" at the simple things that affected me today. It matters not. I'm rich with the gifts received, my daughter's time being pure platinum. And the See's didn't hurt, either. I was touched.