A Fish or a Dozen Eggs

I really should not be spending time sitting here right now.

There are a million big and little things to do.  It’s spring already and the list of gotta do’s is painfully long.

But I just remembered something.

And I don’t know where to put this memory.  So I’m writing it down.

We are right in the midst of a world wide pandemic.  Something quite remarkable and hard to believe, really.  It all feels strange.  I’m feeling sort of anxious and helpless and hopeful all rolled up into one half wrapped package.

I want to do something.

I’ve been praying about what to do.  In my small, drop in the bucket contribution to this quarantined (and feels like after school detention) world…

how can I help?

I’ve been getting this answer to send a few people some food.  It’s quite remarkable that we can do that these days. These days of social distancing. Just pull up a website, tap a few buttons, click, click, click…

add a credit card (be sure to add that card verification value number.  You’ve got to be validated and prove who you are among the billions of people all locked up in after school detention just like you, surfing for the same things)

…and there you go.

The thought then came to my mind, “Give, and it will be given…”

I sort of chastised myself because I don’t want to be that selfish. Thinking I might earn something in return.

But let me tell you…an image came to my mind and I can hardly keep the tears from falling at the sight of it now.  This vision came up real bossy as it pushed the selfish thought right out.

In my mind, I saw a little boy.

Standing at the front door.

Big grin on his face, front teeth half grown. Beautiful sunburned cheeks. Bleached out from the sun blonde hair (smelling like that sweet elixir of sweaty boy head and hot sunshine).

He spent the day fishing with his grandpa.  It was on a weekend that my boy would spend at home.  The following weekend, he’d be with his dad.  You see, it went on like that for years.  Weekend here, weekend there.

And if you know anything about being a single mom family…there’s not a lot of money sometimes.  Well, most times there wasn’t a lot for us.

This particular fishing trip had a one time only weekend offer.

“If you don’t catch a fish, they’ll give you a dozen eggs”, he said as he held up that cardboard carton, twine wrapped around in a half tied bow.  A fishing pole in the other hand, bobber bouncing, hook dangling free.

“Mom, I threw my fish back.  I thought these eggs would be better.  There’s a whole dozen!”

Oh, sweet boy.  My sweet, sweet boy.

I remember feeling (and I feel it now as real as I did then) a mixture of pain, sorrow that he felt the need to help, and a swelling heart of pride.  All rolled up in one half wrapped package.  This one tied with a simple twine half bow.

This small, drop in the bucket contribution.  This priceless, unselfish gift.

No credit card needed. No verification.

And all the value in the world.

It was all full of innocence and happiness and satisfaction measured far more than the inches of a fish.

You see, he did this for me.  With no need for earning.

No need for something in return.

These minutes after I checked out of that website, sent that food.

I remember.

And I know…

I’d throw a million fish back.

Without a second thought.

For a dozen eggs.

Any day.






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