I was having one-of-those-weeks this week. The kind where you wonder 'why'? Why am I here? Do I have a purpose in life, and if so, what is it?
Yesterday, I took a call from a lady wanting to order some flowers on behalf of her 8 year old son; he was sending them to his 9 year old girlfriend - yes, she's a cougar! Anyway, recently, due to her Dad's job, the 'cougar' had moved almost 200 miles away. Now, when I was 9 if you wanted to keep in touch with someone you did it via Royal Mail, known in this day-and-age as 'Snail Mail' - a service I still use; to me there's nothing to give you a buzz like receiving a letter/card from someone. Having it drop through the letterbox when you least expect it, then reading words that someone has spent time putting together, just-for-you, is a wonderful thing. Sadly though, when you're young, having to correspond that way can eventually contribute to relationships (friends and lovers alike) drifting apart. However, these days we have email, messenger, snapchat, whatsapp, and goodness knows how many other services for sending (electronic) mail. We share photos with each other on all of these, alongside our instagram and facebook, too. The second you hit "send" it can ping to your loved ones/friends and another second later they can be reading your words, or smiling/laughing at your photograph. It's quick and it's easy. Long distance relationships can feel like such a short distance if you facetime and skype (zoom, I believe, is the popular face-to-face service right now).
Anyway, thanks to the wonders of modern technology, these 2 little love birds have managed to keep a long distance relationship going, and I got to play a part in that when I took the call from his Mum, asking me to make up the flowers for her. Last evening I got a lovely email from the Mum, with a photo of the young lady (very pretty little girl - he's made a good choice) and the smile on her face made me realise, that's why I am here. Yes, his Mum could have gone to another shop, ordered through someone else, but she didn't; she came to me.
On Monday I had a last minute call from one of my regular customers; she orders flowers to take up to her nieces and her Mum's graves on their birthdays, anniversaries and Christmas. I set up a recurrence on our ordering system for them a few years ago - presumptive of me? Absolutely, however, I was able to say to her when she called, in a panic "Don't worry; your order is here, waiting for you whenever you are ready for it" She collected, paid, thanked me and left to take them to the cemetery. Today, she came in with a huge box of extremely posh chocolates (there's a lemon meringue one.. lemon meringue chocolates, whoever heard of such a thing? truly delightful it is too) and she thanked me for always having her back. That's why I am here.
This afternoon had a call from a guy who had never used his card to make payment over the phone before. He was really nervous. I took his order then went through the payment process with his as slowly, carefully and with instructions to make it easier. When we'd finished he said to me "I've been wanting to use my card for years but never felt confident enough to do so in the past. I can't thank you enough for your help". I'm not sure if it's a good, or bad, thing for me to have made it so easy (who knows how he might fritter away his money in the future) however, that's why I am here.
This week, with the very smallest of gestures, which really were nothing to do with me other than being the other end of a phone, I made 3 peoples lives a little easier and brought the biggest of smiles to a 9 year old girl.
The longer I live, the more I am learning that life really does have a funny way of throwing us some curveballs. Right now I am in a really good place; life is good, in one way - I'm quite possibly the poorest I have ever been when it comes to finances yet I am so rich in other ways. I'm well aware at any second it can all come crashing down around my ears (it wouldn't be the first time) however, because of moments like the ones I've had this week, when it does crash I'll know that once I can make it to the other side there will be more days like the ones I've had; days which have brought me such joy, made my heart sing and inspired me to keep on pushing.
That's why I am here.