Reflection #9

“Feeling Safe”

The elderly we meet at the nursing home aren’t always capable of a two-way friendship. Sometimes they won’t remember us. They’re afraid to trust us. Sometimes they are bitter because of all the people who have hurt them.

But if we keep coming back…maybe, just maybe, our faces will become familiar. Maybe they will know that we accept them, however worthless they might feel. Maybe someday they’ll let themselves feel safe with us…

Oh, the comfort —
the inexpressible comfort
of feeling safe with a person,
having neither to weigh thoughts
nor measure words,
but pouring them all right out
just as they are
chaff and grain together
certain that a faithful hand
will take and sift them
keep what is worth keeping
and with the breath of kindness,
blow the rest away.

– Dinah Maria Mulock Craik