What I Need
“There is pleasure and there is bliss. Forgo the first to possess the second.”
At my last doctor’s appointment, I sat quietly as she, in her signature diligence, took notes and organized my ever growing file. It was much of the same ~ lab and biopsy results, seemingly endless chat about my worsening symptoms. I don’t know what possessed me to look down and see what she was writing, but my eyes fell to several lines at the top of a crisp white page.
Expected duration of condition:
She looked up at me, catching my defeated gaze and quivering lip. The pain seared through my hips and back, a steady burn trickling down to my knees. I shifted in the hard plastic chair and looked away from her empathetic smile.
“Don’t lose hope,” she said as she grasped my aching hand. “This doesn’t mean it will be this way. We can find a way to manage this. We just need to keep trying.”
I managed to smile back, nod and thank her as tears silently threatened. I prayed for the strength to make it to my car before I lost all control. Ten minutes later, with shaking hands and tears flowing freely, I was home. I went straight to my bedroom, drew the curtains closed, buried myself under the covers and, literally, shut out the world. No phone calls. No emails or texts. Nothing. No matter how urgent.
My dear husband arrived hours later, scared to find me in my cocoon, my shell, makeshift armor made of bedclothes.
“What can I do for you?” he whispered, leaning down to gently pull the covers away, stroking my hair with his calloused hand.
Words failed me. All I could do was shake my head and cry. I felt his lips against my forehead, and the sheet against my shoulders as he gently pulled it up around me. I felt his weight shift from the bed. I heard footsteps. The door closing.
I prayed for sleep. Anything to escape the pain, the shadow of illness, the uncertainty of all of it. Prayers were answered. I don’t know how long I was asleep, but when I awakened I turned to the bedside table and found something that wasn’t there before. A white envelope, with his handwriting on the outside.
For You My Love.
With shaking hands I reached over and grasped it, tearing the envelope carefully. I sobbed as I read the treasure that was tucked inside. I traced my fingertips over every loving word. And just like that, a wave of devotion and gratitude and every wonderful emotion imaginable washed over me.
Everything I felt before slipped away.
Then I realized it. I need to let go of this fear that I constantly carry around ~ the fear of disappointing the people I love.
I need to always remember that this journey isn’t mine alone. I am walking this path with an unbelievably compassionate and loving man, who, in the face of everything, loves me.
I need to stop wishing for something different. This is God’s plan for me. I need to keep the faith and trust it.
Whatever it is that challenges us, we simply can’t lose hope. I know I say it a lot, but it’s true. Love wins. Our love for others, their love for us, and our love for ourselves.
Our love for the world and our love for life.
Have a beautiful month everyone, and a beautiful week.