Do Guardian Angels Walk Among Us?
Is It Merely By Chance Perfect Strangers Meet?
Have you ever sat and pondered the stages of your life? Do you play out different scenes over and over in your mind, inserting all the “what if’s” at more convenient times? Or perhaps you envision different roads and paths with detours and obstacles along the way? Do you wonder why perfect strangers enter your life at the times that they do? Is this a chance encounter or are “guardian angels” sent at specific times to guide and nurture us? A perfect stranger just enters your life to lift you up when you are at your lowest. When I sit and reflect back on different times in my life, this is exactly what has happened. Crazy, isn’t it? There has got to be a logical reason, right? Well, I haven’t found one, so I refer to these experiences as “Angel Visits.” If you are not comfortable with that term, feel free to call it anything you like. The following is a short story of one of my encounters with a perfect stranger. Although I don’t remember her name and only had the pleasure of meeting her once, the conversation we shared that night has guided me along the way.
Angel in the Night
One crisp December morning, I decided I needed a break and wanted to take a trip to see my sister in Minnesota. So I rounded up some girlfriends and off we went. I was nineteen and always ready to party. At that particular point in my life, I was working 12 hour shifts to support a pathetic excuse for a boyfriend. Not only did he not work, he was controlling, and physically abusive. Not my proudest moment in life, for sure, but definitely one of the reasons why I drank myself into oblivion every weekend. This weekend would be no different, except that I was free to do what I wanted without any repercussions. I was free to be me.
Our weekend getaway was anything but quiet. We met some local college students through my sister and set out for the new hottest dance clubs. This is where I met a guy named, Chris. He was in his second year of college and not hard on the eyes at all. I noticed Chris didn’t drink and I remember thinking it was a bit odd, considering all of his friends drank. He’s young and should be living it up! Oh well, I thought, I enjoyed his company. Not only was he handsome, but he was respectful and extremely funny. During our conversations we exchanged where we came from, likes and dislikes. I told him I was from Nebraska and found out he was to. We had a lot in common and I found myself not drinking as much. I enjoyed having an intelligent conversation and great company, something I hadn’t had in a long time. Eventually the weekend came to end and instead of saying goodbye, Chris asked if he could have a ride back to Omaha. He wanted to surprise his parents with a visit and would much rather ride with a bunch of giddy, crazy girls than travel the following week by himself. Well, we were not going to deny ourselves the opportunity to stare at his beautiful face for a few more hours. The trip back home was definitely one to be remembered. All of us singing, goofing around, and making complete asses of ourselves during our pit stops at highway convenience stores.
As we entered Omaha, Chris gave directions to his parents’ home. We eventually ended up in a neighborhood where the houses were bigger than anything I had ever seen. As we turned up the circle drive at his parents’ home, our jaws dropped. We were sitting outside a big, beautiful mansion with huge, white pillars, and a perfectly landscaped yard. This was definitely not a place my 1978 rusted out, brown mustang should be sitting. As we were telling Chris goodbye, the front door opened and we were greeted by a tiny little woman full of excitement at the sight of her son. We were all invited to come in. I thought, Crap, now they’re going to know who owns the clunker sitting in their driveway, how embarrassing.
With smiles and hugs galore we were all ushered into the sitting room. His mom brought us drinks and snacks, making small talk along the way. His parents were extremely nice and acted as though they had known us our entire lives. As I sat listening to the idle chit-chat, I noticed Chris’ mom kept staring at me, which made me uncomfortable and self-conscience, to say the least. This kick started my thoughts, mostly negative. She’s obviously sizing me up and has figured out I am definitely not from their side of the tracks. I decide to play it off and flash an uncertain smile. She in return asks, “Why don’t you come with me and I’ll show you the rest of the house?” Reluctantly I joined her and my negative thoughts took over. Obviously, she just wants to prove how much more superior her family is to mine, and remind me that her son is out of my league. Why else would she be showing me her home?
We walked aimlessly through hallways lined with marble floors, to rooms full of designer furniture and accessories, which eventually led us to more rooms that I felt, were useless and unnecessary. My negative thoughts grew with each step I took, until I slowly realized I needed an attitude adjustment. It wasn’t fair to this person who had graciously opened her home to us. She had treated us with nothing but respect and hospitality, so what gave me the right to think the things I was thinking? I needed to tune out those evil, criticizing voices in my head. Once I did that, I enjoyed the rest of the tour and the stories behind certain treasures they had acquired in their travels.
We finally entered the master bedroom. I waited for her to explain where she purchased her luxurious linens and draperies, or the closet with never-ending designer clothes and shoes, but she didn’t explain any of it. Instead, she shut the door and this quiet, soft-spoken woman motioned for me to sit down in a chair that was so massive I feared I’d disappear in it, never to be seen again.
We talked for the next two hours. Two strangers who knew nothing about each other, but who had a conversation that flowed effortlessly. I can’t explain the connection we had or why. All I know is that she must have sensed that I needed guidance and reassurance at that particular time in my life. Even though this event took place ages ago, there is one thing from that night I have carried with me through the course of my life. She stated, “Hon, we are given choices in this world. Imagine that you are a traveler walking along a road…this road is your life. During your journey you are always faced with a fork in the road . You can either choose to stay on the same road, where you know what the outcome will be or you can choose a new road. The new road is scary and a bit overwhelming because it encompasses the unknown. But at the same time, it’s also appealing because of all the exciting possibilities it offers. The choice is up to you. Stay where you are or take the new road.” At that very moment I experienced an epiphany and I have experienced one every time I have had to contemplate changing the course in my life.
Eventually everyone came searching for us and our conversation came to an end. My girlfriends were tired and anxious to get home, so we exchanged hugs, handshakes, smiles, and a wink with a flirty remark to the cutest boy ever! I gave one last hug to a stranger that had become my friend. As I let her go, she winks and says, “You’ll be just fine Sweetie, just remember what we talked about. You are a remarkable girl and I am glad to have met you. Take Care.” I thanked her again and went on my way.
I took the advice she gave me and did change my life. It took a little time to completely rid myself of the jerk I had dated, but eventually it all worked out. Thank you my friend, for peeling back the layers of my soul that night and believing in that lost little girl. To this day, I still refer to her as my “Angel in the Night.”
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