This is why the doctor's don't want me leaving the house, I realized, because I have about as much energy as a generic AAA battery. Plus, I felt worried and guilty. My daughter had a sinus infection and I should have brought her to the doctor earlier. My sister had to come straight home from work and go back out with me, my fussy toddler, and her own needy 4-month-old so we could go to the doctor's clinic and the pharmacy. Walgreen's was so busy that they said it would be about 30 minutes before the prescription for antibiotics could be filled.
Towards the counters was a small line of chairs and I did the waddle-walk unique to all large expectant mothers, until I reached a padded seat. Then, as if there was no grace left, I simply flopped myself down with a loud "thwack" onto the plastic upholstery.
Someone else was there, a middle aged man with a similarly pained expression. I gave him a little smile as he said, "Getting close?"
Close to my due date? Ha! But it's not like there is a sign on me that says "twins" so I manage a tiny chuckle and reply, "Nope, just half-way. I've got two in here."
His eyes were so gentle as he asked, a little more subtly, "How are you feeling? I remember those days. My wife always was so miserable."
I brushed it off, told him I'd had worse days. I mean, after all, I was only tired, not suffering from shingles and worrying about undergoing surgery to correct my babies' placenta.
But, when I asked him the same question it opened up a wealth of information. He was in a lot of pain. Something I would never had known with his gentle eyes and understanding smile. He was reaching out to give sympathy to a pregnant woman when he himself was suffering such severe sciatic nerve pain that he could hardly walk. Something tugged in my heart and instead of crawling into my own world of misery I shared with his. We spent the next fifteen minutes joking, sharing, trusting each other with personal insights. The pharmacist called my name and I almost felt disappointed, a feeling mirrored in his eyes as well. For a few moments, life had seemed more tolerable because we were sharing it with someone else who understood that level of misery.
Funny how that happens. I connected with a fellow soul with so much ease because they understood where I was at and was going through it themselves. I realized that is why I have joined three groups online for moms on bed rest and complicated pregnancies. It is nice to reach out and connect with others who understand because they are there too.
God doesn't give us any challenge without a purpose. I am daily reminded of this. Today I found yet another example of how he molds our hearts to better understand the needs of others.
What challenges do you face that make you uniquely capable of sympathizing with others? Do you have a troubled marriage, financial issues, difficulty completing your education, or a family member who is seriously ill? Remember that what you go through uniquely makes to capable of truly reaching out to others. God uses all things for good.
Hope you have a BEAUTIFUL day!