Three questions, three sources, one answer

I am now on the other side of gall-bladder surgery. It was fairly anti-climactic, all things considered. I had prepared my mind and body as directed and ensured that my students would be well cared-for in my absence. I remember being wheeled into the operating room, getting my body arranged as directed…then, what seemed like a second later, being told to wake up because it was over. I find myself recovering well, despite the noticeable lack of energy for the time being, which I am certain will improve with time.

I have been given three questions from the discrete sources, but I think that the answer is the same.

Here’s question number one, asked by my counselor, What are you grateful for?
Today, I am grateful for children, my husband and parents, and for clothes that are too big. My children, for their sweet thoughtfulness as I recover; my husband and parents for their care and love; my too-big clothes for not fitting as snugly as I normally would choose. All three have alleviated the pressure from mental, emotional, and physical pressure that would have been too much to bear at this time.

From a Weight Watchers friend, What is most important to you?
As I have contemplated this question, the answer that keeps resounding is honor, dignity, and strength. I’ve considered the movies, books, and blogs that I most enjoy, and the common thread is that each speaks to one of those three (sometimes all) themes. Each choice that I have made of which I am proud involves one of those elements.

The third question, posed by my dear Mr. Longfellow in The Theologians Tale is, What is thy duty? Longfellow’s poem depicts a young theologian in prayer who encounters a vision of the Lord, not in agony as some artists show, but in the guise of everyday life. The young man leaves his prayer to perform his daily duties, fearing that the vision will leave in his absence. He returns to find the vision there with a simple answer to his question.

It is this simple answer that, for me, answers all three of today’s questions:

Do your duty. Let the Lord do the rest.

Right now, my duty is to recuperate. My duty is to be grateful for the blessings sent my way and to seek what I find most important. The rest will take care of itself.

It’s a good way to banish the worries that might camp outside my door like papparazzi, as I have more time to spend in contemplation than I have had ever before in my adult life.

I like this answer. It brings peace and truth.


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