Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Things a sick person is grateful for

This gratitude-list is perhaps not very dignified, but it is entirely sincere!
  • lotion-enhanced tissue
  • Ricola cough drops
  • a husband to bring home the cough drops & take out the trashbags full of dirty tissues
  • herbal tea that tastes of cinnamon
  • honey in the tea
  • the microwave (or the stove & kettle) to heat the water for the tea
  • decongestants recommended by the doctor
  • the doctor
  • insurance to pay the doctor
  • a furnace
  • the furnace being on and working properly
I have essentially been sick for four months straight--ever since marrying and moving here. At the same time, I've been struggling with questions about whether it's okay for me to be here being absolutely unproductive (by external standards), for months on end. What does rest mean? What does it mean for me to rest? Who am I when I'm not doing anything?

I think this sickness, annoying as it has been and continues to be, may be God's way of making sure I know it's okay and even good for me to rest and to do nothing. In the ordinary course of life, I believe rest is good but I don't necessarily believe it is good for me to rest. When I'm sick, though, I know I should rest, that it's the right thing to do. I tend to see that as a temporary state of affairs, though: the sickness departs, and at that point I ought to go back to doing and doing and doing. I've never been sick this long, and I've never rested so much. I'm learning. I just hope it won't take lifelong sickness for me to absorb the lessons of lifelong rest and an identity dependent on relationship, not accomplishment!

But thanks, God, for teaching me.

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