To the One Who Cared9:10:00 AM
Early on a Friday morning a few months ago, I was sitting in the Salt Lake City Airport waiting to board my flight. I was headed back to Texas after receiving the news the night prior that my sister had passed away.
With shock still setting in, my shaking hands dialed my mother. She was awake too. Although she wasn't waiting for a flight, she had a hard time sleeping that night (and for many after). We talked a little bit, cried a lot, and I hung up right before it was time to board my plane.
As I walked through the tunnel, my heart felt heavy and my eyes felt even heavier. I hadn't slept and I didn't know when I would be able to next. I placed the bag that my friends had packed for me into the overhead compartment and sat down, dazed. Just moments later, a young woman sat down next to me.
I had clearly been crying, and maybe I was still even then. It was early, maybe 5 AM. She didn't have to talk to me. She didn't have to show love.
But she did.
She asked if I was okay.
She asked what had happened. She asked what she could do.
This was the first time I had really started to talk to anyone about my sister's death - it had just happened a few hours previously and I was on autopilot since it had. I hated that I was so far away from my parents. I hated that this had happened. I still do.
I can't even tell you this woman's name, because I don't remember. She was going to visit her mission in Wisconsin and just happened to be sitting next to the biggest mess on the plane, but she didn't care. She showed me unconditional love.
I will never forget this experience, and I can't help but feel sentimental and grateful as I sit in an airport writing this now.
If by some crazy chance she sees this, just know: that experience will stay with me for eternity. You were my angel when I was alone and I am grateful you talked to me. It may not have showed, but it made a difference.
There are so many people struggling in this world, and even the littlest sign of love can make a forever impact.