Dear Lady at the Gym,
I thought you looked familiar, but that's not why I waved to you. I was just waiting for somebody to reply to my text, so I waved for you to cross so you didn't wait for me unnecessarily. Honestly, I was a little shocked when you walked up to my car, but like I said, I thought you looked familiar. I figured you were coming to ask, "Are you Mrs. Bair?" and then I would see whose mom you were from one of my 19 years.
But you didn't.
You came over to my car and you said, "I just wanted to tell you how proud I am of you and your transformation. I see how hard you are working, and you look fantastic. I remember you because I had kids at Rheems, so I remember you from when you taught there. You look incredible, and I just wanted to tell you that you need to keep up the great work. You are an inspiration." As you walked away you gave me two thumbs up and yelled a final, "Keep it up, you look great!"
I think I managed to squeak out a thank you. At least I hope I did. No stranger has ever said anything like that to me, and I think I was a little bit in shock.
I haven't had the chance to see you again during a workout, but if I do, I hope I'll have the courage to come up and talk to you. I really want to tell you what an impact your words had on me. I think I always feel like my friends HAVE to tell me they are proud of me. They HAVE to be positive and supportive because it's what friends do when you're trying really hard. But you..... there was no mandate for you to walk over to my car and say those words.
But you did.
And I don't think I'll ever be able to put into words how much you inspired and encouraged me. How much you made me want to keep going and to keep making good choices.
So thank you. Thank you, Former Rheems Mom who saw me at the gym. Your words have made a permanent impact on me, and hopefully I can do them justice.