Meet, Stuart, a 77 year old man who has a new lease on life. I met him this morning while having my morning coffee in my car on the Redondo Beach Esplanade, and feel that the Universe brought him to me at a time where I am facing my own darkness. He approached me by knocking at one of the car windows and was pointing to his hoodie. I lowered the window and said hello, dear friend! I got out of the car and shook his hand. I too was wearing a hoodie and asked him where he got his! He told me he had just recovered from open heart surgery and was not supposed to live. Well, there, there he was, standing in front of me with a big grin, a proud grin if I must say. He explained how he had seen the campaign sticker on my back window and was so excited to share his story with me because I would get it and would get how he feels. He used to be an avid walker and sometimes would walk 10 miles a day. Then, out of the blue, he had a heart attack and doctors told his family that he would not make it. Well, he did! He is now walking five miles a day and wears his hoodie during all of the walks. I asked him why the hoodie and he explained that it is his training partner and that he is meant to live and is worthy. I said he felt his sense of self when he wore it. I did not remember him buying this from me and asked him what his name is. Did not ring a bell. He explained that he got the hoodie at a thrift store in Inglewood and that he just had to have it. It was a sign for him, he said! At first I felt sad that someone had given it away. But then, a no-duh moment came to my heart and mind. This was all meant to be. He was meant to find the hoodie and it was going to be a part of his new lease on life.
There are signs all around us that we are seen and held. Yes, this may be a simple sweatshirt with three words, but it is so much more than this. These words are giving Stuart more confidence to walk those daily miles and to believe he has a purpose in life. He is worthy, seen, and loved. I needed to meet Stuart and remember that I too am not alone. He was my angel this morning and I am so grateful to have met him. Thank you, Stuart, for sharing your story.