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Sheri C. Uy

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A Day In A Pond
By Sheri C. Uy
Tuesday, January 01, 2008

Rated "PG" by the Author.

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There are instances in our lives when we draw strength from the wisdom of a child in the face of an overwhelmingly painful experience.

A Day In A Pond

By: Sheri C. Uy

01/01/2008


 

Rachel was absently throwing small stones without a target when she noticed a little girl sitting alone on the steps of a pond. The girl was about five, judging from her young face and frame. Rachel searched her eyes and was surprised at the sadness she discerned in their depths when the little girl turned to look back at her. Without understanding why she was drawn to that sad look, Rachel slowly made her way to the pond steps, where the young girl was sitting. “What’s wrong, baby? Why do you look so sad?” she asked in her gentlest voice. The little one barely moved. “May I sit beside you?” Rachel persisted. The girl’s chin rested on her bended knees. “You know, I’m alone and kinda feel lonely too”, Rachel continued. Her persistence seemed to work as the girl turned to look straight in her eyes. She stared at Rachel as if trying to ascertain if, like her, she really felt sad too. Then with a candidness that took Rachel by surprise, she threw back the question at her. “Why do you feel lonely, Miss?” The soft questioning voice sounded so innocent that Rachel felt something stirred deep within her soul.

 

Why was she sad? Her mind went back to the little incident she had with her husband in the morning. She had prepared a special breakfast hoping the unusual gesture would somehow take him out from ‘amnesia’ that seemed to ail him for the last couple of months. After deliberately putting the date/clock on the breakfast table, she decided that he had plunged himself deep into oblivion when he noticed nothing but the morning paper in front of his hateful face. She was fuming mad inside and had difficulty in holding her temper at bay. Putting on her rubber shoes, she took her bike and went to a solitary bench located at the far end of the park. It was her favorite spot. She usually went there to think and study. That day, she prayed and just sat there and watched the late afternoon skies.

 

It was her birthday. She was more angry than hurt at the knowledge that her husband had somehow changed and cared less and less about her over the months. Their small community always teemed with all kinds of talks, the latest of which was that her husband was seeing another woman. But she refused to be drawn into such kind of useless exercise.

 

The little girl’s upturned face brought Rachel back from reverie. She was patiently waiting for her to reply. “Wwell…,” Rachel hesitated, “I am lonely because a loved one is slowly drifting away…”To her horror, her eyes brimmed with tears and she couldn’t control her shaking hands as she wiped away tear after bitter tear. “I’m sorry, baby. I know you’re too young to understand and I should have kept it my little secret”. She felt silly and stupid pouring her heart out to this innocent little girl. But the young one was intently listening and looking at her. Then in a clear voice, she said: “Why are you crying? You know, Daddy said that I’m bigger now and I am a brave girl,” then she looked at her more closely, as if trying to make sure of what she was going to say, “…and you are bigger than me, and you are crying. You are not brave.” At that moment, Rachel honestly felt ashamed of herself that this little girl was truly braver than herself. She was right. It was as if the girl could see inside her heart and knew that she was as scared as a mouse caught in a mousetrap. Yes, she was scared of getting hurt and she was scared even more of losing the man that she loved. “Sometimes, it’s OK for brave girls to cry”, Rachel hastened to correct the little girl’s impression.

 

She dried her eyes and made a fuss at straightening her shoulders. “OK, I wanna be like you. I want to be brave too,” she said it like an officer before his superior. Then, in a much milder tone, she asked her again. “I already told you why I was feeling lonely, now, can you tell me why you look so sad yourself?” The little one’s answer was straight and serious. “Because my friend borrowed my bike and I am afraid that it might take a long time before she gave it back to me.” She looked away as if imagining that beloved bike in the hands of another, then, in a voice that held conviction she continued. “But you see, I know that she will give it back, no matter how long it takes, because she knows that it is mine.” She continued in a reassuring note.

 

This little girl was obviously beyond her age. Rachel could tell that she was intelligent in the way she talked and looked at her. The girl further informed her that the bike was a gift from her grandfather on her fifth birthday. Rachel was about to say something when she stood up. “I have to go now, Mommy and Daddy will be looking for me”. Then like a grown up, she offered her small hand and said, “It was nice talking to you, Miss.” Rachel met her hand halfway and held it in both of hers. She felt a strange bond between herself and the little girl and smiled a bit too brightly when she finally bade her goodbye.

 

On her way back to the apartment, Rachel parked her bike near the pond bridge and decided to walk the remaining distance between which was about half a kilometer. She realized she was at the pond for a good 7 hours! She was starting to feel the pangs of hunger but she thought the exercise would do her good to release some of her stress. Then, like a slow motion movie, she saw them. Her husband had his arm around white shoulders as her ebony black head rested on his chest. She felt the ground beneath her feet shake violently and a thousand thunders exploded in her ears. She was rooted to the spot and her mouth went dry. She wanted to move but her limbs refused to obey as an unknown force squeezed her heart hard and tried to knock her out. Without ever knowing how, she struggled and slowly made her way to where they were sitting, unmindful of the soft spring flowers that were crushed under the hard soles of her rubber shoes. Her eyes never left them, two beings entwined and lost in a passionate kiss under the dying rays of the sun.

 

It was a most painful yet enlightening experience for her.  Acknowledgement of the things that happened was the first step towards the long healing process. She was betrayed, hurt and finally abandoned by the man she entrusted with her life and dreams and who, she thought would always do the right thing for her. They were married for almost 8 years.

 

Rachel has moved on and can recall the memory without bitterness and regret. The wisdom of the little girl on the pond stayed in her heart to this very day. Her words empowered her to calmly think and speak with logic. She was an expression of strength and hope at a time when Rachel’s life was about to crash in shambles. Brave little girl! 

 

Her husband never came back but Rachel felt a renewed sense of confidence and, at a certain level, independence. And she felt good! She thanked the Lord for sending her His message through the words of a child. Rachel often pondered if the little girl was her angel in disguise, sent by the Heavens to make her strong in the face of unspeakable pain that was about to unfold before her eyes and engulf her. She would forever remember the soulful face of the little girl, her memory etched deep in Rachel’s heart. It was an unforgettable day in the pond.

 

(Author’s note: Rachel is now married to a wonderful man and lives with her husband and two beautiful daughters in Spain. I thank her for sharing her painful experience with me and for allowing me to write this part of her life in the hope that women and even men who are in a similar situation would draw courage from her experience and not bend to life’s trials.)

 

 
 
 
 

 
 
 


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Reviewed by C. Borris 3/3/2010
Good for Rachel. You are an inspiration to women like me, Sheri. I'm so glad we're friends. Best regards to you and your family.
Reviewed by Z McClure 2/25/2010
The Lord has many ways to strengthen us. vERY well told story.

~Zach
Reviewed by Cryssa C 1/5/2009
We each have different trials in life, but remembering to face each one with courage and relying on heavenly aide will help us to get through each and every one.

Cryssa
Reviewed by Mimi Moxley 1/8/2008
Touching and honest.
Reviewed by M. Rafferty 1/5/2008
A touching and uplifting piece. Nice one.
Reviewed by Lillian Hampson 1/2/2008
A touching story written so simply yet with a kind of emotion that can only be described as tempered, disciplined and wise. Painful experiences are there to let us know the depth and substance of the human nature, the way that it reacts to trials and how it struggles to get itself out from a painful situation. This is a good one, Sheri. Continue to shine, 'little girl'.

Much love,
Lillian F. Hampson

P.S.
So sorry for my late replies. Got the photos and your grandchildren look so cute and adorable. Take care and be good to yourself too.
Reviewed by T. Schwimmer 1/2/2008
Simple yet filled with a lot of emotion, wisdom and the ability to stay focused to look towards the brighter side of life. Heartwarming write, Sheri.

Best wishes,
Tanya
Reviewed by Joyce Bowling 1/2/2008
A heartwarming story...captivating and wise...enjoyed this much, well done!
Blessings,
Joyce B.
Reviewed by Andrew Grover 1/2/2008
A heartwarming and inspiring story. Innocent children are sometimes bearers of extraordinary messages to help us cope with extraordinary challenges in life. Enjoyed this piece, Sheri.

Yours,
AJGrover
Reviewed by Marigold Johnson 1/1/2008
As usual, your story didn't fail to touch my heart. In life, pain and heartbreak make us strong and wiser. The different experiences we encounter each day have more to do with maturity than how many birthdays we've celebrated. In the end, we are responsible of who we become and what significance such an experience may leave in our character. Thank you for being a good friend, Sheri.

In Christ,
MNJ
Reviewed by Jean Pike 1/1/2008
A wonderfully inspiring story, Sheri, written with simplicity and wisdom. We could all learn a lot from a child!
Peace!
Jean
Reviewed by Richard Mender 1/1/2008
There is something profound in the way the woman drew strength and courage from the child. I, for one believe in Angels. There are many among us and we only need to listen with our hearts to their voices. Touching and uplifting piece.

Richard
Reviewed by E. Richardson 1/1/2008
A very touching piece. Sometimes, we are made to experience the hard hand of fate to make us stronger. to discover something precious within us, the love of oneself and ultimately, to make us more mature in our outlook on relationship thus, becoming a better person. Thank you for the "lift".

Best wishes,
Elizabeth
Reviewed by Tinka Boukes 1/1/2008
Thanks for sharing your words with me today!!
May God bless you with good health,
prosperity, friendship, love, laughter,
joy, and peace in 2008!!

Love Tinka
Reviewed by Karen Lynn Vidra, The Texas Tornado 1/1/2008
Heartwarming story, Sheri; brava! Very well written!

(((HUGS))) and much love, your friend in America, Karen Lynn in Texas. :D

Happy '2008'! :)
Reviewed by Felix Perry 1/1/2008
Heart warming life lesson story with such warmth that it has to make you feel good to read.

Fee
Reviewed by Regino Gonzales, Jr. 1/1/2008
I do believe that angels exist and the little girl was an angel or was guided by a Higher Entity. The story is an excellent account of how a seemingly small and insignificant event can bring up courage and change the course of one's life. It is also a testimony that there are circumstances in one's worldly existence that defy rationalization and can only be ultimately be attributed to Divine Help. Thank you, my dear, for sharing this piece.



Sincerely,



Regino

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