Friday, February 27, 2009

Helping The Helpless

Nothing tugs at a Mama's heart like a sick child.

We nurse them during ear infections, stomach bugs, sore throats and knee scrapes. No matter how sick they are or how big they think they are, that helpless, needful expression on their face hurts a mother's heart.

It's the getting through it all that hurts the most. Trips to the doctor are scary. Shots are painful. Medicine tastes terrible. Fevers can sometimes be frightening.

They call for you from the couch, "Mo-mmyyy. Can I have a drink?"

We bring them a glass of water for the tenth time this hour, a cool cloth freshly rinsed, a comforting blanket or stuffed animal. Feel their forehead again and kiss their sweaty hair, counting the hours from when we last gave them their yucky medicine.

This week was one of those sick times at our house. It wasn't a really terrible sickness. No buckets by the bed or trips to the ER, but painful just the same.

One afternoon I was tucking my daughter's comfortable blanket around her, the one we call "Comfy" and delivering her favorite animal from her room, the one we call "Bunny," and it was then that I really hurt.

What if, when she looked at me with those helpless, needful eyes I could not help her? What if there were no money for a doctor or no doctor at all? What if I could do nothing, give nothing?

As her mother I shudder to think how that would feel. Although I have felt helpless at times in the face of sickness or pain, I have never been without help. I have had access to a doctor, to medicine, to warmth, to food, to water. All things I often take for granted.

I just want to give thanks for the help I do have when I feel helpless. I give thanks for Comfy and Bunny, for yucky tasting pink medicines, for long waits at the doctor's office, for painful needles, and for chicken noodle soup.

I offer a prayer for the many mothers in the world who are feeling helpless, who cannot offer anything to their child when she cries, who look into those needful eyes and have nothing to give but their love.

I pray for you. I pray for your child. I pray that help will come.

Very soon.

In these times when we are all tightening our budgets, consider reaching out to mothers around you, to children in need or to families abroad. We can help the helpless.


smhgrace said...

Powerful post and timely reminder.
Shannon H.

Anonymous said...

Jut like Shannon said: powerful post.

TRS said...

I have tears in my eyes and I'm not even a mommy.

I think of those mothers we see in documentaries about illness/poverty and starvation in Africa. Those sad moms with babies covered in flies. And they are so used to the flies that they don't even shoo them away.
That's helpless.

Shannon said...

Nothing else to say but amen, and amen.