Hands from here
In the book I am currently reading a young woman meets her grandfather for the very first time just two days before his execution on death row. He has committed terrible crimes and his family has suffered a great deal of pain because of his past. He has had plenty of time to reflect and to prepare for what he is about to face. He is as ready as one can be in that situation. Meeting his grandaughter is a great moment of joy in his final days.
The grandaughter has just discovered that she has a grandfather and at the same time, that she is about to lose her grandfather. She has learned about his cruel past and I imagine she is somewhat frightened and disgusted by this man. They may be related but they come from two very different worlds and she will never be ok with the terrible things her grandfather has done. She still has a connection with this man simply because he is her family.
When they finally meet they are too choked up with tears to do much talking. He is her grandpa and she is his only grandaughter. They are family, and that bond is stronger than anything else.
As I went about my day I looked at people in a new way. That person belongs to someone. That grouchy man is someone's dad and I imagine him reading a bed time story to his child. The lady who never seems to stop complaining has a husband she is eternally thankful for and she showers him with love and compliments. They all belong to someone who loves them.
Yesterday I crossed paths with a man who I have found myself having negative thoughts towards in the past. This time I looked at him and saw a father and a husband. I imagined him sitting next to his wife at home and I imagined him spending Thanksgiving day with his grown children. He belongs to people and he is loved.
Our families love us just because we are family and we belong to each other. We don't have to do anything to earn their love. We love them simply because they are ours.
Today I am thankful for the story of man on death row who has reminded me that everyone is special to someone. I chose to view people in a new light today and looked at them as I imagine their loved ones look at them. The harsh light I had previously seen them in was softened.
The grandaughter in my book will mourn the loss of her grandfather because no matter what he has done in the past he is still hers. They are family.