I was at Fry's Marketplace, picking up a few last minute items for Ava's birthday party tomorrow, which then turned (as it always does) into a full-blown hour-long grocery shopping extravaganza. I spent the time placating my children with snacks, bargaining, promising them some treats if they would sit still for a few minutes, try not to touch anything, "...don't scream, don't hit, don't push!!"...etc. etc. etc. Needless to say, the grocery store is always a bit of an exhausting experience, but a neccessary one, nonetheless. Anyways, as I am at the checkout aisle with my overflowing cart (and a few customers already in line behind me), Ava declares that she has to go potty, "NOW!" Seeing the sudden look of desperation in my face, a friendly customer service lady who had been fussing over Ella tells me not to worry, she'll watch my cart for me while I take the girls to the restroom. So off I went, one girl in each arm, hustling to the restroom as fast as my little legs can carry us.
After a successful (but time-consuming) trip to the potty, we finally make our way back out to the checkout aisle. I was expecting to find my loaded cart to be waiting for me, but couldn't find it, or the girl who said she would watch it for me. Inevitably, my inner-pessimist creeps to the surface, and I am sure that my stocked cart has vanished for good. Just as I begin to heave my chest in an indulgent "poor-me" sigh, I see the customer service girl I was looking for. She smiles and waves me over to another aisle, where she has single-handedly unloaded all of my groceries, rung them up, bagged them, and was simply waiting there for me to swipe my card and pay.
I could have cried. I almost did. I am on the verge of tears right now, hours later, just thinking about it. This sweet girl made all the difference in what could have been a terribly frustrating morning, but what turned about to be a heartwarming reminder of all that's right with the world. This girl didn't even know me. And she didn't have to go the extra mile. But she did. And for that - for her - I am truly grateful.
This customer service lady - her name was Andrina - represents a host of others who have helped me carry the large load of responsibility in my life. My mom, my in-laws, my friends, neighbors, and so many others have shown me a great deal of love and generosity in the times when David is gone, the girls are melting down, and my sanity is stretched paper thin. For the times you all have rescued me from the brink... I thank you. :)