“Why you be so pi’iful” Gracie, 4 years old
As I was working my way through dressing this morning, I was worrying about Facetime. I know I will see all of my family today via electronics. Am I presentable?
Suddenly, I found myself crying. I don’t want my grandchildren to think I’m pitiful.
In the last months I’ve had a chance to tell most of them that a stroke hasn’t made me a new person. I’ve reassured them that I am still who I have always been but just can’t do the same things. But is it true?
After not quite four months I’m not my old self. I cry easily. I’m more vulnerable. I can ‘t take charge. I can’t take them anywhere – they’re taking me. I can’t walk without a cane. I can’t hug them with both arms.
Am I pitiful?
“I don’t want to be,” came the whimper.
“Then don’t be,” came the whisper.
Pitiful is a state of mind. It manifests itself in self-defeating talk, in cowering posture, in undue hesitance, and in a myriad ways of being. The presentation is all in my power.
A not-quite-moving right hand isn’t an indication of my worth. My use of a cane shows that I am learning to walk alone., not that I am dependent. Just maybe my family is relieved to know of ways to help me. It can be their loving gift to me.
At the end of the day I can’t say I’m fond of FaceTime. I’m not used to seeing myself as I am. LOL! I’ll probably carry that optimistic self-image to the grave. But I’m not feeling pitiful. I’m feeling strong in my family position as loving elder, on-call adviser, role model, and Matriarch who loves unconditionally (most of the time). That hasn’t changed.
So this is my belated Thanksgiving post. My report that I am still living in gratitude for all my many blessings.