Lightning Strikes

FullSizeRenderValentine’s Day is around the corner, and with it comes the interesting conversations about how couples met one another. Many times my sisters and I have heard the story of how our mom and dad met. My mom is 89 years old now but, when prompted, she can still recall the details.

It was about 1945, and young women were swooning over Frank Sinatra’s sultry voice, and young men were fighting for their country in WWII. My mom, along with her girlfriends, left a theatre in NYC after seeing Frank Sinatra live, and my dad, dressed in his Navy uniform, along with his buddies, was trying to get to Coney Island. They walked past each other and lightning struck in one look. They stopped, talked … and my mom brought my dad home to Queens, and introduced him to her parents.

In those days, it wasn’t uncommon to welcome someone from the military into your home, providing them with a meal and shelter for the night. So my father was welcomed, fed, and given a sofa to sleep on in my grandparents’ home. My father’s ship sailed out the next day (he never did make it to Coney Island), but a love was born between them that lasted 63 married years. And, although my dad has passed away, I can honestly say, my mom and dad’s love for one another still lives on.

I wonder if this sparks a memory of the story of how your parents met? Or of your own story?

A Line in the Water And A Worm on the Hook

I’m thinking, today, about when my sisters and I were kids and the family would go fishing — sitting, waiting quietly for a bite — something that comes to you while you do nothing but enjoy the moment. My dad fished as often as he could. He taught us how to bait a hook, cast out. But more importantly, how to sit and wait, taking it all in and savoring our surroundings — how pretty it all was, the birds we could hear, the feel of the breeze. I believe it is because of this that I will soon get a call from my sister, Jayne, asking if I see the early signs of spring, or if I notice the shadows changing. Or we will talk about the different song of the birds in the morning.

But waiting — that’s the hard part. There are plenty of opportunities to practice waiting all the time. There’s waiting for the weather to clear up, waiting for a doctor’s appointment, waiting for a delivery, waiting for change, waiting for answers, waiting for time to pass.

I once read, on one of those silly plaques in a novelty store, “there is a fine line between waiting for fish to bite and just plain looking stupid”.  And isn’t that the truth! To sit quietly waiting … while the most I am investing in the game is a line in the water and a worm on the hook, — well, isn’t that just ridiculous? Shouldn’t I, at the very least, waggle the line and wiggle the worm? Entice the fish to bite? Cast, and re-cast? Most times, for me, waiting peacefully is impossible, although I love the idea of it. Then:


comes to me, and there is something to this. A peace that my mind cannot comprehend. A knowing that all things work together for good. A trust. A revelation. And, with that, I am reminded how to wait: surrender.  To the moment.  I don’t just give up, I move out of the way.   I let it all fall into His hands.  I don’t just let it go, I let God. And, in that place, I find


which is what I think dad was trying to show us with a line in the water, and a worm on the hook.