Forte, the hero of my suspense series, rescues and protects children. Because he’s an ex-SEAL, his adventures are high profile. Because he’s a recovering addict, he takes it a day at a time and ignores the fanfare.
In real life, children are rescued every day and we don’t even see it.
It happens when a teacher like my friend Denny lets a kid snooze in the back of his class because the child has spent the night on the streets.
It happens when mothers like my niece Tasha shrug off the guilt and pain of her past to make whatever small connection she can with the children she bore.
It happens when step-moms like Beth pour out their love to a son they didn’t birth yet make him feel that she did by packing lunches and running errands and dispensing hugs.
It happens when grandparents like my wife Kathy drive 100 miles and back to see the boy she raised for eight years swing his bat and smile at her.
It happens when we recognize we are all in this together, this mess we call life, and we decide to forgive past mistakes (because we all have them) and rejoice in the small victories of today.
The passing of time feels more like a lightening flash than a lazy lightening bug, it seems. Snap, the years are gone. Let’s freeze-frame today. Let’s do it with thankfulness. Let’s realize that our patchwork families still bring healing, thanks be to God, to our children and to one another.
How do I know this? Because long ago I was that broken child. And people like Mama Vergie – and other mamas like Janie and Wensil and Bette and Mamas Gordon and Greer – didn’t give up on me. Instead, they infused me with a hope I didn’t feel, a hope that grew into whatever talent I have today.
A Hope that, hopefully, will be given to others by my children Jonathan and Tasha and Gentry for years to come.