I met an angel yesterday. I walked along the beach to speak on the phone and look for seating. Well, I found seating under a pavilion. The first seat I sat in was super hot. I didn’t understand why because someone was sitting nearby comfortably and the bench was not in the direct path of the sun. I moved deeper inside of the pavilion to a table where no one was sitting. At the the adjacent table was a lady looking a bit disheveled. Honestly, I chose to avoid that table because of her appearance. Her table was positioned so well with the best view of the beach and Oahu’s beautiful mountainous landscape. However, I still bypassed it. As I spoke on the phone, the lady started speaking…almost whispering. Shamefully, I thought that maybe she was a bit intoxicated, possibly homeless and or suffering from some mental illness. I know, smh.
Hopefully, my story can help someone else. It’s like, she repositioned herself just to annoy me. I continued to talk on the phone as she continued to attempt to get my attention. She was literally whispering, “you’re beautiful” and other affirmations. Most people don’t know that, I don’t view beauty outwardly. I do receive compliments about my outward appearance often. I’m always grateful, but typically a bit bashful. So, I turned around and thanked her with a half smile and continued conversing on the phone. She continued whispering and somehow, her WHISPERING overpowered the conversation. If I feel aggravated, annoyed or disrespected I’m typically a raging hot mess. Most people don’t get that Patrice. However, ask my closest friends and my daughter. I’m not proud of that side, but as this lady kept whispering “you are who you are and that’s enough”, I heard her but I wasn’t really listening. So, immediately I got off of the phone and turned around to face this lady. I was about to pretty much explode and I looked at her with this big smile (a few teeth, well many teeth missing) on her face. In retrospect, this must be the smile that God has when he’s doing everything to get our attention and we finally give him our full attention. She continued with the pleasantries, started telling me about herself (I didn’t ask any questions) and gave half smiles as she spoke. At some point, I couldn’t hear her really well and wondered why I could hear her so clearly when I was on the phone. Once she had my attention, I literally had to “actively” listen in order to hear her. I didn’t share any info with her because I didn’t know her. This lady said, are you enjoying your time here. I told her, YES! It’s beautiful. She then said, you almost didn’t make it here. I was confused because, it was so easy to get here. I had no flight delays, transportation to and from the airport was easy breezy. So, at that point, I’m really thinking that she has a mental illness and that’s really the only reason I continued to give her my time as I’m currently in state of “reclaiming my time”. I listened as she went on and this lady, who by now has shared her name as Debra said clearly, that “we change plans, God does not.”
See, I started preparing for this trip a year ago. So many milestone were to occur this year. So much to celebrate!!! No one knew my plans, because I love a good surprise. When life changed in February, I stopped planning to come to my favorite place on Earth. I didn’t touch the money, though. It was a Sunday while at church, the pastor was talking about his family’s vacation and I remembered my plans for this year. Truly, I almost didn’t make it here! When I started planning this trip last year, he knew that some of the characters would change when those wheels went up but those meant for this journey would still be here when the wheels touched down. I think she knew when the light finally went on in my head. She then said, God’s outcome is always better than what we think the outcome should be. Wish people well & trust His will. I laughed with Debra for a few more minutes and then thanked her. She gave me a few more encouraging words, told me that she’s always around if I need her and I left.
As I walked back to the hotel, God reminded me to never judge a book by its cover and that first impressions really aren’t everything. What looks good on the outside may not be good on the inside and vice versa. Also, last impressions are indicative of who a person truly is.