I must be in the mood for heartbreak and inspiration because An Invisible Thread: The True Story of an Eleven Year Old Pan Handler, a Busy Sales Executive and an Unlikely Meeting With Destiny by Laura Schroff and Alex Tresniowski certainly had plenty of heartwarming moments within.
Schroff, a single sales executive in Manhattan, was flying high in the mid 1980s, when she was approached by an eleven year old pan-handler. At first she ignored him, but something made her turn around and ask the boy if he wanted to go to McDonalds. This wa the start of a relationship that grew and still exists today.
Maurice was a boy from the projects with drug addicted parents. He had moved many times in his short life and was often hungry. Laura didn't know all of this when she first became involved with him, and their relationship was not about money. Instead Laura became Maurice's friend, gave him opportunities he never would have had, and opened his eyes to a way of life he knew nothing of. For example, when Laura took him to visit her sister and her family one weekend, Maurice was amazed by the fact that people had an entire room just to watch television, and a room to eat food in. He also never owned a clock and was frequently late to school until Laura bought him an alarm clock of his own.
Reading about this unusual friendship shows the power that one person has to change a child's life. And although it seems that Maurice reaped the benefits of this relationship, Laura also benefited from Maurice, enjoying being able to parent him and care for him.
An Invisible Thread is a fast read, an inspiration to all of us to look for opportunities that arise every day for us to help others and to seize them.