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Recently, I was attempting to buy paint. No VOC paint because of my chemical sensitivities. And by me buying, I really mean — me standing in the parking lot with my dad going into the paint store and the paint store guy coming outside for me to tell him what I needed. If you’ve followed my blog for more than 2 seconds you’ll know that I am disabled with MCS (multiple chemical sensitivities) as are millions of other people.

I can’t speak for every person with MCS but I suspect I speak for most when I say we miss having random moments of love and beauty come into our lives. Due to the nature of our illness we generally are alone in our homes — isolated from the rest of the world. This day I stood in a particularly ugly parking lot in a row of commercial buildings with more ugly parking lots. BUT there was a lovely breeze bringing me cool fresh air. I decided to make the most of my escape from isolation and started to say hello to the few people going into the store. An average looking guy going in kept right on walking as I said hello and then another and I gave up on the third. As the length of time drew on to match my paint colors, I decided I would strike up a conversation with the other woman waiting in her car. As I looked her way she looked away.

flowers parkring lot milkweedAnd so I did what I normally do when I feel alone and/or lonely, I grabbed my camera and found a bit of nature. There was a patch of what others call weeds and I call wildflowers. As I snapped a few pics of the flowers and listened to the birds, a man cutting across the parking lot stopped. By appearance, he was a person who knew the meaning of the word poverty on an intimate level. He pointed to the flowers and said something that I could not understand but I replied,”the flowers are beautiful”. After a few more attempts, I finally understood he was saying, “I Love them.” He smiled and moved on. A while later, I was on the other side of the parking lot still waiting but quite enjoying the clouds that were floating by, when the man passed by again. This time he told me to have a nice day and waved and smiled with a pureness of joy that I rarely see in another human being. I smile even now as I think of his exuberance and the pureness of his giving.

plants parking lot berriesI invite you today to find an “ugly” place and look for the beauty there. Maybe a flower growing out of a crack in the concrete. Or the sunlight glinting off a piece of glass in a trash heap. Or a dead log that is slowing you down just long enough to notice all the shades of green growing on it. And maybe you’ll be lucky enough to have an earth angel stop and share the moment with you — if your heart is open enough to see beyond the rough maybe dirty exterior to the beauty and light they carry in their heart.

log moss Granby Trail