I prayed for you tonight. Before bed. I’m serious.
I don’t get down on my knees or do anything crazy like that. I don’t kneel. Namely, because if I knelt I wouldn’t be getting up again without the assistance of EMTs.
So you might be wondering what I prayed for. Well, that’s easy. I prayed for you to laugh. That’s how I start every prayer for you.
I can’t know what you’re going through right now, nor how badly you hurt. But I know one thing: there is no better feeling than laughter.
I prayed this for Robert and his wife, Cynthia, who have practically been living at the oncologist’s office recently. I pray this for my cousin Cosby, and for my cousin Bentley, to laugh so hard they spill their beers.
I prayed for Sherry, and her husband, Lyle, my surrogate parents—they know why. Please help them to laugh, God.
I prayed for the family of the guy down the street—the ambulance was at their house today, and everyone was in the yard weeping as a covered gurney was wheeled away.
Also, I pray tomorrow will be better than today.
I don’t care if today was a decent day, I pray tomorrow is off the chain. I pray that you have a brief moment of awareness tomorrow, as you eat your PBJ, or your Swiss Cake rolls, wherein you say to yourself, “Man, this is a pretty good day.”
I pray this for my friend Loe, who just lost her nephew. And for Regina, whose grandson has been fighting for his life. I pray this for Mark, whose dad is now on hospice care. For Laney (6 years old) whose dog died. And for Jon (15) who has his very first date with his very first female on Friday.
And normalcy. That’s a big one. I also pray for you to have some normalcy.
There is no sensation more wonderful than feeling normal. Normal enough to read a book, or watch reruns, or to eat Captain Crunch for supper, or Blue Bell for lunch.
When the Spanish conquistador Ponce de León was roaming Florida, chasing the Fountain of Youth, I believe he was actually chasing normalcy. He was not aware of this obvious fact because he was, of course, an idiot. Anyone who chases the Fountain of Youth is.
But think about it. Youth itself is just a bunch of wonderfully normal days. In fact, the feeling of normalcy is so promisingly glorious, I’m not sure whether it exists.
Which is why I pray for this. Because I’m hoping for miracles.
I pray normalcy for Helen Andrews, for Keloth Anne, Linda Moon, Lynn Webster, and my dear friend Sheila. For Amy, you know who you are. For Steve and Elvira, introvertism is a serious condition.
I pray for a beautifully normal day for Celeda “Honey” Joyce on her 94th birthday today.
I pray normalcy may find Susan, who is awaiting custody of her abused grandson. I pray normalcy for Henry (9) who is still getting use to his wheelchair, and for Mickey, who finds himself a sudden bachelor after 47 years of marriage.
For my friends Matt and Michelle, because they are beautiful.
For Maria and Besty, two estranged sisters who just started talking again after 21 years. For Carolyn, my editor, who is, tragically, forced to repeatedly read my work.
For Kelly, who is contemplating suicide. For Bill, who is not doing well with chemotherapy. For Anthony, who is going through opiate withdrawals.
For Stephanie, who feels alone because she is now a 42-year-old orphan. For my mother’s hip pain.
For Gregory, who doesn’t know whether his daughter will survive the risky surgery for which he just signed the consent forms. For Anna (16), who just put her baby up for adoption.
But most of all, I pray for you.
Yes, you. Since I don’t know you, I can’t know exactly what to pray for. So all I can do is think about you.
Which is what I’m doing. I am imagining you, playing on your phone, reading these feeble words. You’re wondering if the yahoo who wrote this paragraph is a nutcake.
“This is just some guy on the Internet,” you’re thinking. “There’s no way this guy’s prayers can do anything for me personally. What a total boob.”
Well, you’re wrong, friend. I am not a total boob. Only a partial one.
Words are powerful. Words are ideas. And ideas are thoughts. And all thoughts are unseen things which exist outside the natural world. And anything existing outside the natural world is, by definition, supernatural.
So although I can’t know exactly what you need right now, or how badly you’re suffering, I know these prayerful words are not just pixels on a screen. Not if you agree with them.
Because, you see, if you actually agree with these words, they cease being mere words, and they become something otherworldly.
Maybe you think that’s a stupid thing to say. And well, maybe it is stupid. But then, maybe I’m just stupid enough to believe that if two people on earth agree about anything they ask for, it will be done for them.