Crossing Paths

I’m continually amazed by life’s surprises, both good and bad. Two seconds of eye contact with another person can save their life. One second of looking at your phone while driving and can take someone’s life. One conversation can lead to new friendship just as one phone call can deliver heart-breaking news. You never know what the day holds in store or how quickly your life will be changed forever.

I met someone. She sold me a copier. And she is amazing.

This woman came into my office about a month ago and introduced herself as my new account exec for our office equipment. We met briefly and set up an actual appointment for the following week. Aside from me teasing her about her southern accent (which I actually adore), we had a friendly but professional meeting. Hands down, this was the most enjoyable conversation about office technology I’ve ever had. As we stood and shook hands at the end of our meeting, she asked me how many kids I had. After I answered, she whipped out her phone to show me pictures of her daughter. Then the flood gates opened. She proceeded to share with me a huge chunk of her life story. I have to say… there’s something about that conference room that tends to make people open up, but this was very, very different. The way in which she delivered the rather intimate details of her life experiences was so natural and comfortable. Even though I was learning these things about her for the first time, I felt like I had known her my entire life. Her story was absolutely captivating. Tears welled in my eyes as I listened to not just her unique life story but her amazing outlook on life. Her honesty and bravery blew me away. She has suffered a lot of loss in her life, but she has not allowed those experiences to hold her down. On the contrary, she appears to draw from the pain and convert it into positive energy. She is so damn inspiring! I fell in love with her instantly.

We both felt this oddly intense connection and simultaneously suggested we carry on the conversation sometime over lunch or coffee. She has been in my office several times since our first meeting to present her proposal, have me sign paperwork, etc. We’ve struggled to stay on task every time, but we managed to get the work done by reminding each other we would be able to talk more during our upcoming dinner date. She tried to shake my hand after I signed for the new equipment the other day and I laughed out loud at the absurdity of a handshake by this point. I grabbed her in a bear hug and slapped her on the back! (Apparently, she brings out my inner football player.) Our receptionist just shook her head.

It’s fascinating to me that the two of us who share such a strong bond have been walking around oblivious to the other our entire lives. Then suddenly, over a business transaction, we’ve come together, if only for a season (although I’m hoping it will be a lifetime). There’s no doubt in my mind we have been living as strangers up to this point for a reason. Each of us has grown from our own life experiences and we have finally crossed paths as part of some bigger plan, even if for the simple purpose of friendship. The fact that the energy between us was so instantly palpable makes me look forward to what is to come as our friendship blossoms.

Life is happening all around us every second of the day. Sometimes we hit a smooth patch; sometimes we hit a rough patch. Sometimes you get a low blow out of nowhere; sometimes you’re randomly handed a shining star.

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On the afternoon of our first dinner date, I had been handed a major blow. Aware of this, she brought me this sweet bouquet of flowers.

 

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