This morning I think of a single friend who's gone through surgeries alone, calling on various friends to bring her ice for the therapy machine, groceries, do laundry, or othrwise assist in convalescence. How fortunate I am to have my husband Collin. How cheerfully he helps. Sometimes though I ask for a smile, a reassurance that no resentment lingers. There's so much I need found and brought.
A pill vial, an acidophilus from the refrigerator, an address book so I can call my cousin--all longings I can't or shouldn't get up to get. He's my hands and feet. I don't like asking. I don't like the risk of him being unhappy with my asking. And, as I write that, I wonder if my not wanting him to be unhappy puts me in the category of "co-dependant." Or, is it normal?
A sense that God is with me and his love for me penetrates my neediness. I credit the prayers of friends with giving me strength to believe. Often I feel I must work hard in order to be loved: fix elaborate meals, respond to e-mails the same day they arrive, listen well and empathetically. Family or friends all required stellar behavior, or so it seems. Their smiles depend on whether I can do the things that cheer them. Their smiles easly become my aim, my goal in scurrying about, a nervous squirrel.
Now I needs be still as a mushroom, a fungus leaching its nourishment from the hands and feet of others. Yet somehow, mysteriously, not due to probing Bible study or prayer, somehow I can believe in this instant. My heart integrates my mind's knowledge that I am loved just as I am and this this love stays the same even as others fix my food and bring it to me, a couch-potato and EZ-chair recumbent.
Somehow I know this minute that I am made in God's image and even as God crafted Adam and Eve and said they culminated all his marvelous creating of birds, sky, forest and flowers, so I, like they, am very good and that being in God's likeness implies my great value whether or not I am up and doing, contributing something. This is what a close reading of Genesis is helping me to chew, swallow me and feed on.