This past Thursday evening was a Parent/Teacher conference night at my school. I was assigned to help at an information table. As families entered the building, we greeted them, shared PTA/fundraiser/community information, answered questions and gave directions if needed.
When I arrived at the table, I was introduced to a woman who had volunteered to be an interpreter for the evening. She was a real go-getter. Friendly, reaching out to families without hesitation.
We chatted during the breaks, and I soon learned she was originally from Venezuela. She shared with me about her family and some upcoming reunion plans. Two of her sisters were flying in that very night! And another had flown in unexpectedly earlier that day.
She had tears of joy as she told me about the surprise. This would be the first time that her siblings had been together in thirty years. Thirty years.
Part of their reunion would include a 70th birthday party for one of the sisters. She smiled as she mentioned the photo album that they were compiling for the birthday girl. So many years of memories.
I got teary-eyed listening to her story. The thought of being separated from my family for thirty years…well, I have difficulty even imagining.
Our shift at the information table was over. I wished her well and said how I enjoyed meeting her. “Oh, I’m sure I’ll see you around here again,” she said. I smiled, “Well, I expect to see a photo of you and your sisters!”
On the drive home, all I could think about was talking to her again. She must have a story that needs to be told. I hope for the opportunity to know and share it.
The only word I could think of to describe how I felt after our visit? Inspired.