Hello, my name is Mel and I am selfish.
This past week and a half I have had to wear more hats than I normally do. The flu invaded my home and completely took out my right hand man. At first I didn't think much of it, but as the days went on and the patient's condition worsened, I knew we were in for a ride. As the weight of my daily responsibilities coupled with the weight of our joint responsibilities fell solely on my shoulders, I'll admit that there were some ugly moments and that my attitude was not always noteworthy. As my college professor use to say, "Life is filled with teachable moments..." and this past week and a half I learned a lot.
I learned that my mother is a super hero. That day in and day out she selflessly and willingly gives up her time, her desires, and her agenda to care for my stepfather. When cancer attacks, fatigue sets in and your heart is weak, there are limitations to daily life that just simple can't be done, and a caregiver is needed. Not only did I see a clearer picture into the life she daily lives, and of the amazing woman that makes up her core, but I learned more about compassion and what is means to be a suffering servant. Sometimes as a thirty-something with good health it is easy for me to forget that just walking and breathing and living a "normal" pain free life are luxuries in this world that many do not know. Not only should I live mindful to not take those blessings for granted, but in turn use them to be the blessing in other's lives--to set aside my agenda, my desires, and my time & walk into the pain, illness and suffering of others. To be a friend, to point to hope, and to bear their burden.
I was humbled by the reminder that when you rely on your own strength, very little gets done, and often a poor temperament tags a long for the journey. But when you lean into those everlasting arms, peace that surpasses all understanding and inexpressible comfort mysteriously take over, more gets accomplished and those you are caring for feel the unconditional love and immeasurable grace of a Mighty God.
I struggle with the selfishness of my humanity, some day more than others, but the battle is never too far off in the horizon. I'm thankful for the example of my momma, and hope that the older and wiser I get, I will find that I too have a heart to serve and give as selflessly as she does. I am thankful for the patient who survived my care, who stands by my side on good days and bad, when health is present and when illness has taken over. And I'm thankful for a God who can do wonders with a willing spirit, even one who wrestles with selfishness.
As a little girl, I use to love singing:
"He's still working on me, to make me what I outta be.
It took Him just a week to make the moon and stars,
The sun and Earth and Jupiter and Mars.
How loving and faithful He must be, cause He's still working on me."
So, yes, I am Mel, and I am selfish BUT, He's still working on me!