There was only one black man in the phlebotomy waiting room. Unusual because the waiting room was crowded and usually representative of ethnic origins and different races living in this city. One of the many reasons I love Buffalo.
I came in first and was seated. I noticed him because he was also the only one of us wearing a mouth mask, not an uncommon site in a cancer institute but noticeable. He sat across the room from me and I smiled at him. His eyes told me he had smiled back. I had not had much luck with anyone else (smiles are important to me; see my post, Duchene’s Smiles, Please). Everyone seemed wrapped in their world of worry or boredom with yet another routine to follow for the care they need.
He pulled down his mask so I could see him smile and said, “Are you having a nice day?”
I answered back, “I have no complaints.”
As if talking to himself he said, “You trust in God and leave everything up to him” to which I answered “amen.”
He then directed his comments back at me as if returning from a place of prayer. “I am a blessed man, a very blessed man”.
Since we were talking across the room from each other I wondered what people were thinking.But it was like the two of us were there alone. I continued, “I can tell you are a blessed man because of your ball cap.”
He seemed momentarily confused until he took it off, exposing his baldness, and read the words on the cap, “I AM A BLESSED MAN.” He laughed as he explained he forgot that he had that particular ball cap on but agreed with it wholeheartedly. At this point I was called in to have blood drawn. I left the waiting room feeling the exclusivity of a tender moment with a man who openly and unabashedly shared my hope.
“Always be ready to give account for the hope you have……”
– I Peter 3:16