Of the many things I love about what I “do” in my life by working in a very busy public environment, one of the top things is that I get to observe the lives of so many other humans in the course of my daily routine. Last week I got yet another reminder of just how much beauty exists right in front of us, when we are open to the seeing.
Minutes before we were about to open the restaurant I noticed a woman pulling on the handicap access door. The door was still locked at the time. I dashed over to discover that she had a stroller with a sleeping child and I helped her come in as I unlocked the door. The woman was medium build and had shoulder length, sandy blonde hair. She spoke with a very slight accent that could have been either British or Australian…I’m not sure which?
“We dined here last night and I wonder if perhaps you found my son’s little toy. I think he may have dropped it somewhere along the way?”
I asked her to describe the toy. I remember specifically what she said,
“It’s a small thing….stuffed with sand or pebbles…it’s a sort of jelly cat?”
I let the words float out there for a few seconds as images ran through my mind. I had never heard the term “jelly cat” before in my entire life. The first image that came to mind was one of those teething toys they give children when they are cutting new teeth. You know the ones that are filled with jelly and they can be frozen. I pictured one of those in the shape of a cat.
I asked a few more probing questions before beginning the search for the mysterious jelly cat. My search started in the official lost and found area, which seldom produces things like jelly cats. Lost and found areas are for things like binders, scarves, random shoes and packages that are left behind. If you have ever worked in retail or a restaurant you know that things like eyeglasses, earrings and children’s toys have a way of winding up in odd places.
After no success in the traditional lost and found area I started to forge my steps through all the other possibilities; the coatroom, the maître d’ stand, the folding changing table in the washrooms. No luck. All the while the little child in the stroller slept under the hood of the sun shield oblivious to the all points bulletin that had been issued for his beloved jelly cat. Just when I was about to call off the search and declare the jelly cat officially missing, one of my co-workers said, “Is it a little stuffed giraffe? I thought I saw something on top of the counter in the accounting office…”
My first instinct was to say,
“No, it’s a cat not a giraffe!”
I’ve learned over the years that things that are left behind are often not described as they actually appear. It sort of reminds me of that Meatloaf song titled “Objects in the rearview mirror, they appear closer than they are,” which will now be running through my head all day! I ran up to the office on the mezzanine level and discovered that there was indeed a tiny stuffed giraffe on the counter. I grabbed the giraffe, turned and proceeded back to the stairway. As I got halfway down the stairway the young child stirred his stroller as if he could sense the energy of the little giraffe heading his way before he even saw it. When his mother realized that he had stirred she pulled back the sun shield to unveil a beautiful blond little boy who I would soon learn was named Jack. I would guess Jack to have been about 15-months old: Old enough to use words and clearly show emotion, but not old enough to form sentences.
As soon as young Jack made eye contact with me carrying the little giraffe, his eyes lit up, a huge smile came across his face and I could literally see the love in his little heart radiating out of his tiny little chest. My own heart melted, as I knew I was seeing unconditional love in its purest form. Who among us hasn’t had that “lost favorite toy” moment in our own life or in the lives of one of our children?
After I handed the toy back to Jack, I turned to his mother and said, “I was picturing a cat in my mind not a giraffe?” In her soft little accent, she said,
“See look here…”
She then uncurled the tag on the tiny little giraffe’s foot to reveal the logo of a South African company named Jellycat. All the while Jack was smiling and cuddling his lost and found best friend as if all the problems in the world had suddenly disappeared, and then in that magnificent moment I was reminded of something very important…
In that moment in time there were no problems in the world. In a moment of pure unconditional love, nothing else in the entire Universe could alter the state of joy that Jack or his mother or I was experiencing. Isn’t love always the answer?
Jack and his mother said goodbye and rolled out the same handicap access door that they pulled on before we even opened. The rest of the day I was a bit lighter on my feet. I was a bit quicker to let things roll of my back. I was more open to sending love to everyone, even those who might otherwise have rubbed me the wrong way. At the hands of a 15-month old boy and a stuffed Jellycat brand giraffe, I was given a lesson in unconditional love that will last me a lifetime.
The beauty and the power of Love is everywhere! In times when there are so many things are shifting and changing, it can be easy to get swept into the whirlpool of fear and doubt. If you SEE not only with your eyes, but also with your mind and with your heart, you will always have Faith to persevere. Just like little Jack had the intuition to know that the state of joy was returning even before he could see how it would return, you too can have a sense of knowing that your own Jellycat is coming home soon. We were all born with this deep sense of knowing and trust….that is before we unlearned it!
How do we get that faith and intuition back you ask? It’s really pretty simple. Open your eyes. Open your mind. Open your heart. Humanity has issued the call and the power of Love is answering. People are joining together and sharing their resources. Angels and Divine beings are anxiously waiting for the masses to reach out and open themselves to the help that has always been there. Even the Jellycats are returning home!
What an amazing Universe we all live in! How can there possibly be any need or reason to have fear?