Thursday, August 13, 2015

If



If

I'd not rallied my sleep-
deprived self to join a Gymboree
class when my daughter was three
months old....

And if

I'd not asked another mom at
that class, wide-eyed baby hoisted 
on her hip, where she was from....





....then I wouldn't be sitting at an 
airport in New Zealand on this
August afternoon 20 years later, my
little notebook spread before me and
my mind filled with sweet memories.

For 12 days my Kiwi pal and her
family heaped their special brand
of love and hospitality upon me,
as we drank every last drop of
fun and life and laughter from 
each precious day we spent 
together.




It's the fifth time my friend and
I have connected in person since her
family moved back to their home
country after living briefly in the 
USA, but thanks to our correspondence
over the years, it was as if we'd
never been apart.




If.

It's a powerful word, one
often tied to regrets.

Forks in the road.  Hesitation.
Fear.  Decisions made or not made.




No one gets through life
without a few of these.

But just as often if is linked to
chances taken and moments seized.

A smile given, and received.
A leap of faith.  A now or never.





Thankfully, daily life is woven 
from a series of ifs, most of
them smaller, more mundane choices.

But sometimes, if we are lucky, one
of those everyday choices, such as
deciding to say hello or returning
a stranger's smile, leads to
something wonderful.

Like a life-long friendship, begun
at a baby gym class but still going
strong, even when those babies are
poised on the brink of adulthood.





Settled in my seat on the airplane,
taking a last look at the winter 
sun dipping low over this green,
green place, I vow to keep my heart
open to the possibilities of if,
the way I did so many years ago, my
curiosity about an accent {What
if she thinks I'm nosy?} winning
over my hesitation about asking.

I'm glad I was nosy : )

Do you believe in the power of

if?





Sometimes the slightest things
change the directions of our lives,
the merest breath of a circumstance,
a random moment that connects like
a meteorite striking the earth.
Lives have swiveled and changed
direction on the strength
of a chance remark.

~Bryce Courtenay


Aroha koe, sweet friend.


xo
Suzanne


{All pics my own, taken
in New Zealand:


1.New lamb in Cornwall Park, Auckland
2. Mt. Eden Park, Auckland
3. Flat White from Mojo, New Market, Auckland
4. Maori totem, Omaha Beach
5. Omaha Beach
6. Hobbit laundry, Hobbiton
7. Sheep in Matakana
8. Helga & Suzanne after walking
Coast to Coast in Auckland --
16 miles and still smiling!