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  • Denise Frakes

Acts that Imprints Your Heart

My grandpa Alton told me a story. He was a great story teller and amazingly patient grandpa. When I'd visit, he would take me to the grocery store and let me pick out my favorite cereal. This was a big deal for me. I'd ponder toy vs cereal for what seemed like hours. Grandpa would wait, not saying a word, not a sign of impatience. He was a kind man.

Grandpa Alton was a dairy farmer and then when he moved to town became a janitor at University High in Greeley Colorado.

As a janitor, he would look out for the teachers. If they looked down he'd stop and tell a story or joke. My grandpa could really tell a story, always had a joke. He was a quiet man until he warmed up then he would talk.

He took me fishing a lot when I was a kid. Mostly he untangled my fishing lines, fed me sweet buns and hot chocolate grandma had packed and then told me stories. Stories that would matter later in my life.

He told me of the summer one of his neighbors broke his back. Unable to bring in his farm's crops, the family would have lost the farm. Grandpa showed me a picture of about 7 tractors, neighborhood farmers all coming together to bring in the crops. They gave income and time injured farmer time to heal and stay afloat. These were not rich farmers. It's not like they sent their hired helpers. No, these farmers added into their own heavy loads another farm to look after. Many Hands

Grandpa was most proud of that summer. Years later whenever he would tell me this story he would have tears in his eyes. Those were tears of love, kindness, gratitude, appreciation. The kind of tears that happen when you do something good for someone else. Humanity in it's best light.

Grandpa was a hard & consciousnesses worker. He could whistle like a bird. He worked happy, whistling and enjoying his work. He sat on years of cold bleachers watching us kids play sports. Grandpa was a creative soul. Mostly Grandpa was amazing because he was an exceptional human. He was kind, patient, giving, thoughtful, loving, wise.

Yesterday, I mowed my neighbor's yard. As I was mowing, another neighbor stopped by at the end of his walk. He was planning on mowing too. He grabbed his mower and mowed half the lot, I mowed the other. Many hands...

Today when our neighbor's get home they will be greeted by care and love. This is what my grandpa taught me. To do good things for others, be kind.

Maybe we should argue less and focus instead on ways to do more kind deeds for each other. Acts of kindness, random, intentional, small, big, consistently building our humanity muscles.

There is a lot going on in the world. It will take us all to pitch in and help each other. My grandpa lived into his mid 90's. Later in his life the things that really mattered, that fed him, nourished him were the acts of love he gave. Those were imprinted on his heart. It wasn't his things or arguments won that mattered in the end, it was the imprints on his heart that mattered.

There is a book I'm reading. Shared by a wise mentor of mine. The hidden life of trees. Have you read it? Please do. It's a story, the life of trees. How they care for each other. We can learn a lot from forests. Also watch Fantastic Fungi- I love this movie. I think it's on Netflix. This movie introduced me to fungi, forests, and how they speak and care for each other. So good- imprints on my heart good!!

Mostly, be kind. Kindness, gratitude, love, acts such as these leave imprints on your heart and soul. You can't buy that kind of imprint.


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