The dry cleaning lady knows my name. … I’m not sure if this is because my husband’s work attire of choice promotes frequent visits to the dry cleaner, or if she makes an effort to recall names as part of a company public relations/marketing plan. I don’t actually care why she knows my name, only that she does. I love it. My first realization of this came when I was dropping off my usual arm load of pants and shirts. She greeted me before I even reached the counter, “Hi Miss Miller”. At the time I did not openly react with the surprise and delight I felt upon hearing my name. Maybe I had only imagined it. Then another time, I entered the store and before giving them my phone number or ticket I was greeted with, “Hi Miss Miller, are you going to work out today?” (You see the dry cleaner is next to the Curves Gym that I work out at. I am often either going or have just come from there on my way to the cleaners.) I felt like a rock star…she not only knew my name, but she also cared about my workout plans! The best part took place the other day. I was heading into Curves (I was not even going to the dry cleaners), she had just stepped out of her store when she saw me and shouted, “you go Miss Miller!” I felt like Rocky Balboa in the training scene where the “public” cheered him on in his effort to get in shape. Sadly, I do not know her name, but I must confess, her use of my name and her effort to engage me beyond that of dry cleaning has made me her customer for life. I know it was a simple thing…and maybe I am too easily moved…but it does highlight an important point: Relationships Matter.
2008 was a year filled with reminders of this very thing. The year began with the loss of my daughters best friend. As we walk her through this time I am constantly made aware of the powerful impact this relationship had on our daughter and our family. The value of friendship, shared dreams, laughter, tears and adventure is brought to the forefront of my thoughts each day. Relationships Matter.
2008 saw the advent of our family’s “Bloodworth Reunion”. In July our home was filled with relatives young and old. Someof whom we’ve kept close with over the years, some new to our growing clan, and some we seldom see due to careers and long distances. Yet, in less than one day together the value of family relationships was evident. There were stories to tell, burdens to share and milestones to celebrate. I consider myself blessed to have such a treasure trove of wildly diverse, loving and loyal family members. Relationships Matter.
The summer of 2008 also brought about Tuesdays at Teri’s. (The event this blog gets its name from) At the prompting of a very wise, spirit filled Sunday School class member, I welcomed ladies to our home each Tuesday from 10 to 2 for poolside fun and fellowship. This casual gathering of young wives and mothers made a significant impact on my life. Spending time with these precious ladies and their children afforded me a chance to know them better and rekindle my comfort level with little ones. (This would come in handy later in the year when I traveled with my sister-in -law to receive her adopted son from Vietnam) …the biggest impact came from simply watching them grow relationships. As they provided counsel, encouragement and mentoring for one another, it became clear that while the pool may have been refreshing on hot summer days, the real refreshment those days brought was the sweet relief found in relationships. Relationships Matter.
I have many relationships in my life that matter, but none more impactful than my relationship with God through His son Jesus Christ. It is this relationship which grants me unconditional love,grace and forgiveness. Because of friends, family and yes, even the dry cleaning lady, I have known the thrill of being thought of, cared for, encouraged and remembered. I would like to do the same for others in 2009. Everyone should experience the feelings my dry cleaner bestows upon me…simply by being known…Relationships Matter.