Wednesday, January 25, 2012

on learning life's lessons the hard way

How is it.

When all you can do is cry,
look up at that sky,
and ask why.

This husband.

The pressure,
employer demanding seven days a week
work load
leaving before the sun rises,
walking in the door
at last
after they've all gone to bed.
The children stop asking
if Dad's coming home tonight,
and that wife of his,
wrestling herself 
with that selfish, all too familiar
demon named
And besides
and in addition to all this,
there's his four day-gone away weekends,
relieving his sister,
assisting hospice in their care for Grandpa.
What it must mean, wiping the poop off your own father's bum,
off the bathroom floor.
But there's that reward
of a smile,
that once in a while
glimmering glimpse of recognition
of his own son.

A lesson given
of what it means to endure.
To love.
With all your might, mind, and strength.

This sister.

How could this happen,
we all wonder.
This stress fracture to her hip
and still so young.
Stuck on the couch now
internet word games, the dog
her only companions.
All she ever wanted.
To be the mom she wants to be.
To help pay the bills,
To run that race they planned,
And just when she found her joy in movement, too.
Wondering now what her future holds.

While she waits.
Learning patience
while she heals.

This son.

Such disappointment.
And all he wanted was to play with that ball,
with his friends,
on their team.
Broken dream,
first with that hand of his
being out for a month and everything.
Then the crash,
landing him hard on the hardwood
that game two weeks ago.
And now with yesterday's MRI confirming
his own stress fracture to his poor aching back,

he learns a lesson the hard way;
accepting what is given.

This friend.

My own secret admirer.
This fearless woman, pinnacle of success 
epitome of strength,
beyond generous and with a heart of gold.
Yesterday's shock of the phone call and email.
I sit there on the bed,
speechless, warm lump in my throat
that I still can't seem to swallow
while she lies there in that lonely hospital room,
tube down her throat.
Body ravaged.
While this aggressive
ovarian cancer
battle rages on.
Her world turned upside down,
she searches her soul
seeking peace,
sweet relief
and most of all
fighting for her boys.

All the while
holding onto hope,
trying to fight, to not fear.
To trust Jesus.

"Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.
Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls.
For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light." Matthew 11: 28-30

"Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid. " John 14:27


  1. Your poems and photos made me cry. That you can find the words to compose the poem, and the sight to compose the photos, speaks to the beauty in your soul. Thank you for sharing that beauty.

  2. Hope peace comes to her friend like dew from heaven. Beautiful picture!

  3. oh my. this is a lot all at once. thinking of you Emily. Take good care.

  4. Praying for peace in the midst of a storm...

    It is season of pain for me too at this moment...
    Clinging to my Savior for peace ...



  5. Oh, Emily. Good things are on the horizon for you. Big hugs to you.

  6. Hello, dear- So sorry to hear about all the stressors in your life. Sometime it really does feel like way too much. Hang in there, and most of all be gentle with yourself.

    I'm a little behind on things, I had to have knee surgery. Be careful with your knees, Emily!!