Recently, my son, William, has really been into waving. Like.. REALLY.. into waving. And it’s all my ‘fault’ (
and by fault i mean unabated encouragement). Mostly, I encouraged it because it’s cute and because it is a way for me to help him learn the world around him.
Every morning, we would wake up and wave out the window, “Hi World! William is awake!”
After every nap, we would throw open the curtains together and wave saying, “Hi world!! I’m awake!!”
This slowly led to saying hello to trees, dogs, butterflies, grass, and people.
Then, this led to being at Costco standing beside some bins with William permanently holding his hand up to wave at all the people walking by.
Then, this led to being at Church where William waved to all the people sitting behind us.
I LOVE it.
Often, when William is waving I don’t know who to watch. I’m so torn between watching the joy on his face and the joy on the other person’s face. Just a tiny little motion of his hand brings a look of pure joy to someone’s face every time.. that they are bring noticed by such a small person brings a little light into their eyes and a small smile. That someone looked them in the eye and acknowledged them brightened their day for just a moment.
This Thanksgiving, I am grateful for my son. I am grateful that he is not afraid to say hello to everyone he meets and that by his little signs, he is bringing joy in a world that really really needs it. I am grateful that he was able to bring joy to a woman with special needs at church by waving at her, smiling, and having no hesitations with her. I am grateful for this little lesson.
You see, my son knows better than i do what it means to be a Christian in today’s world. He knows intuitively what we have forgotten to unabashedly show to others: joy, kindness, a small act of vulnerability by saying ‘hello.’ He is not afraid to connect for a second, so why should I be?
I see the way that William’s small gestures bring a little joy into someone’s life, and I want to bring that joy to someone too. After all, isn’t that what we are called to do? I am lucky enough to see William’s smiles every day, but not everyone is so lucky to have someone smile at them every day. Could you be that person for someone today? Would you?