Ever since I can remember, I have dreamed of being a mother. This dream came true last summer when I had the sweetest little baby boy. It was the greatest, most unbelievable experience of my life! I was blessed with a big, healthy baby and an amazing husband right by my side. I truly had everything I always wanted, and I felt so unbelievably happy.
Shortly after leaving the hospital, however, I began a difficult struggle with postpartum depression. It was awful. Everything around me appeared dark and sad. I cried constantly. I had a c-section and had to move around very slowly. I wasn’t sleeping at all. I couldn’t fit into any of my old clothes. I didn’t put on makeup at all because I knew I would just cry it off. I felt so overwhelmed and had no idea how I was ever going to be a good enough mother to my perfect baby boy. It was one of the hardest times in my life, and I wouldn’t wish anything like it on my worst enemy. I was a mess!
One day I needed to get some fresh air, so while my husband was holding our baby, I went outside to check the mail. As I was walking (very, very slowly) to the mailbox, I remember feeling especially sad and alone. I felt like nobody understood what I was going through and like I would never feel better.
I then heard someone say, “Hi, are you Ivy?” I didn’t recognize this girl, but she told me she was from my ward, heard I had a baby, and had brought me a meal. She wasn’t a leader in the Relief Society, and nobody had asked her to do it; she just wanted to. She told me she had two young children of her own and that she knew how hard it was to be a new mom and thought her meal would help. It was a short conversation that I don’t remember much of, but it completely changed the way I was feeling and gave me the little glimpse of hope that I needed to get through that hard period. I knew that Heavenly Father was watching out for me and loved me enough to help me through this sweet girl.
Not long after that experience, we moved out of the ward and to a new city. I never found out that girl’s name, and I never got a chance to thank her. Chances are she will ever know how much her simple act of kindness helped me through that dark time in my life. I am sure she was plenty busy as a mother and could easily have ignored the prompting to put a meal together for someone she didn’t know. For all she knew, I was happy and fine and didn’t need anything. But she decided to reach out to me anyways, and I will be forever grateful for that.
From this simple yet profound experience, I was able to learn more about the importance of simple service. For the rest of my life, I want to be like that girl. I want to reach out to people without having to be asked by anyone. I want to take time to help people—even if I know nothing about them. And I want to be so in-tune with the Holy Ghost that I am not able to miss or ignore any of its promptings.
Always, always, obey a spiritual prompting to help someone. You may not feel like your service makes a difference, and you may never be given thanks or recognition, but do it anyway. You truly never know how much something simple and kind may impact somebody’s entire world.