To Comfort

“Stay me with flagons, comfort me with apples…” ~Song 2:5

.

“Mommy, lemme give you some comfort.”

I had been deep in thought, when my youngest bounded over to me.

I was confused by her request until she climbed into my lap and hugged my neck, taking my breath away.

The roles reversed, my baby holding me.

(How very, very blessed am I ~ God has given me tangible hope and wrapped it around me.)

After a minute, she leaned back and peered at me, “Do you need some more comfort?”

“Oh yes, please.” I said.

How does she do that? I’ve been thinking about comfort a lot lately, how to give it, how to receive it.

My 3-year old is amazingly perceptive, sensitive, dramatic; an eager dispenser of love. My almost 6-year old spends much of life in her own world, seemingly unaware of those around her. The contrast is glaring.

This story resonated with me.

There are times when my Rhema is overcome. She cries a mournful, heart-rending cry, and we often have no idea what has made her so sad. Her teacher told me that Rhema seems to have a pride in her crying, her head held high, her little fists at her eyes trying to stop the tears.

She is not easily consoled.

Many a sleepless night, I have tried to reach her, hold her in my arms. But she resists. She cannot tell me what’s wrong or what she feels or needs in the moment. I am her mother and I am lost, unable to conquer the lifelong silence between us.

When I’m helpless to help the one I love, I’m learning that sometimes it’s enough just to be. Just to sit with her in the darkness. And pray for the Light. To love with all my heart from a distance. That, I can do. That, I feel honored to do.

Recently there have been a few precious times, with a few precious people, where Rhema has truly allowed herself to be still and safe.

.

“When my anxious thoughts multiply within me, Your comforts delight my soul.” Ps. 94:19.

God, the true consolation-giver reminds me that He alone is my solace; the way He gives it is specific and best, and my heart is glad in Him.

.

It had been a rough day. For both of us. She was standing in her chair at the kitchen table, spinning around and around. As I rushed by her, she reached out to me. She reached out to me… and tried to jam a whole apple into my mouth. Not wanting to lose the moment I grabbed a bag of pre-sliced apples out of the fridge. Slice by slice, she pushed the apples in my mouth. I savored the loving, deliberate attention she offered as she fed me. As if she were saying, “Mommy, lemme give you some comfort.”

“Thank you,” I whispered.
“Tank ew, tank ew,” she whispered back.

Then I hugged her, still standing there in the chair with her arms at her sides. She remained, and let me hug her.

And I was comforted.

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21 thoughts on “To Comfort

  1. I don’t know how many comments I have, or will, leave that start with “you left me in tears”.

    Sitting here so grateful for the way you pluck the beautiful out of the seemingly mundane. The miraculous out of the hard.

    Thank you

  2. “She reached out to me… and tried to jam a whole apple into my mouth.”

    Funny how many ways there are to show love.

    You totally ‘got’ her loving comfort here.

    I’d bet a million bucks she gets yours too, whether you’re sitting on your hands across the room, or wrapping your arms around her.

  3. Again, your post brings me to tears. To have the tangible hope and to receive the gift of apples from Rhema, two very special gifts.

    Hugs.

  4. I’m impressed by your presence of mind to snag the sliced apples and enable Rhema to make good on her comfort offering! You and your girls have some very special comfort exchanges going on. Beautiful.

  5. Both your post and the story that you linked to moved me so much. Thank you. They give me courage.
    It is wonderful to read of Hope’s instinctive nurturing and Rhema’s sweet, purposeful connection with you. And you are a good, good Mama to them both.

  6. What a priceless moment with Rhema… how great that you were perceptive enough to pick up on what she wanted and go with it :).

    And Hope, she is just too precious!

  7. Praise God for tangible Hope. She is priceless. I agree with others in that you’re an amazing mother to read her and give her the tools she needed to communicate and connect with you. I know that she hears you, loves you, and wants to comfort you. Every now and then God gives you and her to connect and have those unforgettable moments.
    Love you and praying for you bunches!

  8. Wonderful story. Very touching. I enjoyed it with my whole heart and understand how you feel. My son has autism and although, unlike many kids on the spectrum, he does allow hugging and is affectionate, I can relate to the silence and wondering how to reach his inner spirit.

    If you’d like, read over the children’s book I wrote and illustrated about my son’s journey to find his words, “Tyler’s Magic Word Box.”

    http://web.mac.com/g.horgan.portfolio/iWeb/Site/Magic%20Word%20Box.html

  9. Pingback: Love-fed |

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