From the moment I was born, my parents knew I wouldn't be able to go to college. I was the first child of two poor Irish immigrants newly come to America. They lived in the slums working low end jobs paying the bills best they could. I don't blame them for our poverty, my parents struggled everyday and did everything they could for me, and they taught me to be a strong determined honest person. I had a photographic memory and excellent grades throughout all my years of schooling. But I was unable to get a scholarship to any college. I was sitting in my Grandmother's attic admiring her angel statues in Ireland on a trip to visit my family when the miracle happened. Grandmother had loved me and encouraged me to do my best claiming "I hear the song o' angels in your voice and see the shine o' God in your eyes". She always believed in me. I cried a few tears of sadness and loss, she had died last March, when suddenly the bottom of the angel statue I held popped open. A scrap of paper fell out. I picked it up. It was a check written to my grandmother from my great great uncle. It had so many zeroes my eyes crossed. I stuck the paper inside, breathing hard. This could put me through college no problem. But…it wasn’t mine to take. All my family struggled with money. I went down stairs and didn’t speak of it. Then my aunt carried the same statue down and set it in my hands. “Your Grandmother willed you would have this one. Said you needed it.” Then as my aunt held it, the bottom popped off and the check fell into my lap. “Good Lord!” Aunt Shannon exclaimed . “Holy Jesus!” Mom shouted. “Mother o’ God!” Uncle Robbie chimed in, “it’s the money he stole from ‘er when she was a lass! An’ he promised te’ pay ‘er back!”. It was agreed the money was mine since it was in the statue and I did use the money to put myself through college, and the rest to bring my family over to America. To me, this was Grandmother’s spirit, her Angel, taking care of us all. Grandmother saved our family and I became the first one in my family to graduate college. And it was all because of an angel’s present.
The Angel's Present
October 2, 2010