Over the years I have spent a lot of time in hospitals with Scheuermann's disease, a spinal disease which caused bad back problems. Whilst spending 2 weeks at a time in traction, flat on my back and unable to move at all, the days would drag out so slowly and my thoughts would naturally turn to home.
In the morning, I would look at my watch and note that it was time for my children to be getting ready for school and I would wonder if their father or grandmother had everything under control and if the children were buying their lunch at the school canteen or taking a cut lunch. Were they missing me? I missed them. Terribly. And as I felt my eyes fill, I knew that I would give anything to be with them, looking after my own household.
Now this was a strange thing to think because I have to be honest and say that I often had suffered from a dislike of homemaking in my younger years and I can remember saying on occasion that I would rather be working outside the home than being trapped there, doing endless loads of washing and changing little bottoms, wiping little noses and washing floors!
But as the long weeks dragged on, punctuated only by bedpans and meals, I realised that life has a way of making us think of those things that truly matter. And as I watched the nurse close the drapes, heralding another long night of snoring patients and torchlight visits by nurses checking on my legs and feet, my heart would almost break longing to be home in my own bed surrounded by my family.
I would fall asleep dreaming and planning of changes that I would make as soon as I got home- ways that I could be a better wife, mother and homemaker. And as soon as the nurse came in at 7am throwing the drapes apart and bringing in the morning medications, my mind would turn to planning new homemaking schedules and better routines and I would find myself pining to be mistress of my home once again.
Sometimes I think God brings things into our lives so that we may learn from them. In my case, my enforced bed rest made me re-evaluate my life and realise that I had the best of life already. Until my back problems, I didn’t really enjoy my role as homemaker- I loved being a wife and mother- but housework- forget it! It took a few bouts of traction to get me to be still long enough to really consider that which is truly important.
And as I finally healed of the disease that ate away all the discs in my lower back, I not only regained my physical strength, but my spiritual strength and I realised that you never know what you have, until it’s gone. For God not only healed my back, but my attitudes. I resumed my homemaking duties with gusto and enthusiasm. I was thankful for the valuable lesson learned-that it is a blessing to be able to be the mistress of your own home!
© Glenys Robyn Hicks
So teach [us] to number our days, that we may apply [our] hearts unto wisdom. Psalm 90:12