Before West Hollow

Dear Father,

I know I don’t have to explain to You why I haven’t written.  I’ve already said so much but there’s more I want to say about what happened in West Hollow.  First I wanted to take some time to remember what happened before You sent me there.  Because I valued those assignments and those occasions with friends, too.

On the 20th my friends yet again spoiled me with their designated celebration of my birthday.  They remembered how much I liked the clothes, patched with pieces of their own, they gave me when I was homeless.  So they made a quilt for me.  I took it with me to West Hollow but You knew I needed more than just a token of them.  Thank You.  And thank You for seeing to it that I was with them for the party.   I’m not sure who would have been more upset to be separated on my birthday: them or me.  Having Monica there made it even more special.  Even though Tess couldn’t be there, it meant so much that she called to sing to me.  And the hockey stick from Raquel and Nico was really great.  And useful.

Then I had my assignment with Cyril.  Like I told Laja: there’s nothing quite like seeing an old man polka his way into Heaven!  That’s one of those assignments I won’t soon be forgetting.

Then came my gig as a postal worker in South Dakota.  I hope April is continuing to look on the bright side when she can.  I wasn’t sure I’d get through to her.  That assignment reminded me of Max.  It made me wish Monica and Tess were with me.

After I left April, You sent me to St. James Prep where I was a janitor.  You know, I don’t think I’ve ever had so much fun scrapping gum off desks.  Ed was a character (still is) and I wish more people at the school would have appreciated him before it was too late to tell him.  I know You’ve told him.  And I know one day they’ll be able to.  That’s one of the great things about being an angel: knowing there’s always forever.

Next came my time as a convenience store clerk.  That was difficult.  Father, I still don’t understand what causes people to harm others. Don’t they think about what they’re doing to those left behind?  To You?  I wish I could get through to more of them.  But free will… it’s an amazing gift.  One of the most important.  I wish all people recognized that and treated it as the chance to do good that it is.

You knew I needed some fun after that.  And You must have thought my friends did, too.  All these years as an angel and this was my first time as a hand model.  It’s harder work than I realized!  And now I get to spend a good, long time watching my friends flip through magazines looking for my hands.  0:-)  At least I got Bernadette to realize that she needs to take some time off for herself and for her health.  I really enjoyed my time with her but, for her sake, I hope I don’t see her again for a long time!

It was great to spend a day at the Phoenix again at the end of September.  Every time I see Crystal she seems even more sure of herself and stronger.  And Jason… that kid is going places!  Catherine and her staff are doing amazing work.  I hope their new addition fits in well.  You know, I’m really glad You created dogs.

Bennie…  Father, I’m still not sure what I think about her return last month.  I’m angry at her for upsetting Rose and Laja.  I don’t think it’s fair that she ran away before hearing us out completely.  But when I think about her… mostly I feel sad.  I feel like she needs us now.  But how can you help someone who has made it clear they don’t want you around?  As I wrote that, it occurred to me that You must feel that sometimes.  It’s not easy.   If there’s anything You want me to do for Bennie: I’m here.

After that I spent some time behind the counter at Bill’s Book Bazaar.  I may not have gotten many customers but at least I got some reading done.  So is Bill still trying to find Shakespeare and Dante and his other favorite authors?  I wish I was There for those conversations!

Then came Oct. 8th when I started my assignment in West Hollow.  I don’t want to write about that right now.  Some of the girls will be here soon.  But thank You for giving me that evening away from it on the 10th so I could help celebrate Adam’s birthday.  Thank You for Adam, period.



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