Thursday, January 26, 2012

Give and Take Grace - Happy Birthday Karen

A couple of years ago, my men forgot Mother's Day. I sipped coffee and waited. Got dressed for church and waited. Dropped hints like a flower girl drops petals and waited. Nothing.

Nothing. Nothing. Nothing.

Then, at 10:00, we headed for the van. But before I climbed in, before we went to church and I pasted on my best I'm-so-hurt-but-I-have-to-smile face, I melted.

First class fire. On the driveway. For all passers-by to see.

I cried. Kicked the tire. Called my boys and my man dogs.

It wasn't pretty.
And I'm ashamed.

But it's true.

My guys are always thoughtful. Lonny is forever romantic. Not that time. Even Sam and Logan, who never miss a beat, missed that one. They are well- meaning men with good intention. They just dropped the ball.

And I didn't understand.

Until the next January, when I forgot my friend Karen's birthday.

Karen is a tried-and-true pal. When I was immobile for months with back trouble, she visited every day. Brought Twizzlers and yogurt. Climbed right in bed to talk. But we go back further than that. She drove me to the hospital when I was in delivery denial with Grant and two hours later held my son. And there have been a million times since.

She's faithful.

And I forgot her birthday, during what was, for her, a hard time.

When I called days later, she didn't cry. Or kick. Or call names. "You're busy," she said. "And I know you love me."


So, as Karen's birthday is near (this year I didn't forget), I'm thinking of my friend. Of her grace-based reaction. About how she looked past the calendar and saw the heart.

Happy Birthday my dear, dear friend.

Your example teaches me of grace.

Sometimes we need to give. Sometimes we need to take.

And I want to be like you.

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