Was at the GP today. Helpful visit, though not altogether good news. I seem to have myopathy, brought on by long term steroid use and the lessening of activity through my breathing difficulties. Anyway, there it is.
However, what interested me more was sitting in the waiting room. There were two young mums there. One was very actively involved with her children, speaking with them, reading to them, listening to them. They were quite animated and full of beans. The other young mum was hardly interacting with her child who seemed listless and very silent. She tried to get her mum’s attention a few times wihout much success.
I confess it was easy to slip into thinking about “inadequate parenting” and from there into judgementalism. Then I noticed something happening. As the more involved mum of the two livelier chldren started reading yet another story, the other mum started to listen to the story being read, became quite involved, laughing at the funny points of the narrative along with the children.
Truth suddenly unfolded: she was a child herself or at least there seemed to be a child there somehwere that had never been nurtured but was now expected to know how to be a parent . Approaching judgementalism seemed to scurry away in the light of truth; compassion was born. I know that does not necessarily help the wee withdrawn girl, her daughter, which is desperately sad. It is a story that no doubt is repeated throughout the land in all types of communities.
Just saying… look a little more deeply…see a little more deeply….only God knows the dividing place between personal responsibility and an externally caused inability. Primarily we are called to love and leave the judgement calls to His kind and compassionate and understanding wisdom.
I was so glad that struggling mum and her wee girl saw the same GP as I did today. I saw from the way he looked at them, what I discovered when I followed them in to my appointment slot; he is a person of genuine compassion and insight. Thankful to God for him.