By LEE SCOTT
I met a woman named Gwen outside of the Keyserling Cancer Center. As we were standing there waiting, we introduced ourselves to one another.
We started to talk about the people coming out and the miracles going on inside. As we spoke, she told me about the cancer she had more than 32 years ago. The cancer treatments back then were so different.
She was told after the surgery and radiation treatments that she probably would never be able to have children, but low and behold she had a daughter. The baby girl weighed only 2 pounds and was delivered at six and a half months, but she survived.
Gwen called her the miracle baby. But she also said it was not the doctors but God and her prayers that gave her that baby girl.
We then talked about how important a belief in God is when going through bad times, but also being thankful during those good times. The more Gwen and I talked, the more different our backgrounds had been.
She was born and raised in Beaufort County. She had her grandmother in the car, and they were waiting for her aunt to come out. I, however, am one of the Northern retirees who fell in love with the area and have no family nearby.
Gwen lives in an area where her family are all around her. Where people help each other out and drive family members to cancer treatments. I told her I lived on one of those sea islands with people who have worked all their lives and come to Beaufort to retire.
But I told her, they do not stop working. Then I asked her if she was familiar with the Christmas and Easter baskets that the Keyserling Center gets each year. She said she knew of them. I told her the people on my island put those together.
I told her about the people picking up the trash along Sea Island Parkway. She said, “You mean the ones that fill those orange bags.”
“Yes,” I said. “They live on my island.”
The residents volunteer for Second Helpings, Habitat for Humanity, and too many other non-profits to list here. The more I talked, the more I think she understood that the people that come here from all over the country have the same strong community sense, just like she has in her neighborhood.
In the end, my ride came, and I said goodbye to Gwen and waived to Grandma. Despite our differences, we were able to connect on so many levels. We had discussed our faith, our daughters, our jobs, cancer, and our love of our community.
There was no discussion of race, or religious denomination, or the animosity in the world. Just two women enjoying each other’s company.
Then I smiled knowing that right now there is an African American Police Officer working in Charleston and helping to keep her community safe. She would not be here, if it were not for places like Keyserling Center and a mother named Gwen who had a strong belief in God.
Lee Scott, award winning humor writer takes her “Walter Mitty” like persona and spins tales around everyday life. She enjoys boating, reading, and meeting people. Scott lives in Beaufort with her husband, JD, along with their dog Brandy. You can reach her at Lasshood@aol.com.