I was sitting in the shoe department in Dillard’s at Hulen Mall Wednesday when The Husband passed his phone to me.

“Watch this,” he said.

I clicked on the link of George W. Bush eulogizing his father and completely forgot about that new pair of UGGs I was eyeing.

I watched a son honor a father who happened to be the 41st president of the United States.

When George W. broke down, I broke down with him.

I bet you did too.

I watched The Husband get a little tense as a choked back a sob. He was regretting his decision to give me his phone and was hoping I wasn’t going to launch into a full-blown ugly girl cry in public, something I’ve been known to do. 

But I bit my bottom lip and soldiered on.

I left the shoes behind and when we arrived home that night we watched that eulogy at least a dozen more times, our emotions never subsiding.

Same for you, I bet.

Those moments of togetherness are rare these days and this week a nation put aside its differences to honor a man everyone might not have always agreed with, but most certainly respected. 

We forgot about politics and Christmas shopping, and yes, even shoes. We grieved for a hurting family, stood in awe when former senator Bob Dole was lifted out of his wheelchair to salute the casket and smiled when George W. handed a piece of candy to former first lady Michelle Obama.

And we wished things could always be this way. 

Despite saying goodbye to George H. W. Bush, this week taught us that decency, empathy and care for our fellow humans is alive and well.

It was the unexpected Christmas gift we all received.

Sara Vanden Berge is the managing editor of the Empire-Tribune and Glen Rose Reporter. She can be reached at svandenberge@empiretribune.com.