Isabelle, the Spanish woman who gives our apartment deep cleanings, was coming over the day before Thanksgiving. I realized the night before that I had forgotten to buy dish soap. So when she arrived at 8:15am, I darted out to the store. I bought two bottles, one for current use and one to store under the sink.

Upon returning home, Isabelle was cleaning the counter tops in the kitchen. I set one of the bottles of soap on the counter, and in a joking manner, I presented the other to her as a grand gift, “Para usted” (For you), I said with a grin. She offered her usual gracious smile, and in her native tongue (of which I understood about every four words), she proceeded to thank me over and over for the gift and ask God to bless me for having such a big heart. I thought she was going a bit overboard with the joke, but I played along, saying it was my pleasure.

Today as I was washing the dishes, I thought about how much I like Isabelle. She is consistently grateful for the work I give her and forever generous with her blessings on my daughter and me. I also noticed that she had done a particularly wonderful job on my apartment, and I took a moment to gave thanks for her.

My thoughts then began to re-run the day before when she had pretended to be so happy about the dish soap. Something about it struck me as odd, and I searched inside for what I was picking up on. It then occurred to me, “I wonder if she thought I was serious about the soap?” I turned off the water and bent down to look underneath my sink. Sure enough it wasn’t there, she had taken it home. I gasped and laughed out loud. Feeling a tug at my heart, I was overcome at how sincerely grateful she had been receiving a bottle of dish soap as a gift.

This was quite a reality check.

My daughter was also touched by what happened and summed it up perfectly when she gave me the title to this story:

“One woman’s soap is another woman’s hope.”

Out of the mouth of babes… So wise and wonderful our children are!

Something I try to be conscious of is how fortunate I am and to be grateful for my fortunes, no matter how small or seemingly insignificant.

This Thanksgiving, I pray that you have many fortunes to be thankful for!

This blog, and all my writings, are explorations into the wondrous, deep, and ever-evolving process of living, loving and growing. My intention with Pebbles for Thought, is to empower and uplift, one post at a time.