By Faith St. Clair
We have all been taught that sharing is a good thing. Give unto others….share your toys, share your food, share your home, your hearts. Share your gospel, share your testimony, share your time and talents. And the one thing that propels us, other than the fact that we are told it is the right thing to do, is the promise that sharing gives you a warm and cozy feeling.
Well, today was my first experience at having to share my son with someone else and for some reason my feelings were fettered rather than fuzzy.
My son (now 22) had hand surgery today to wire some fingers back together and check on nerve and ligament damage and in spite of him telling me that I didn’t have to take off work and go (his girlfriend was going to take him), I went anyway. I’m sorry, but it’s just too hard to turn off the Mother switch. I didn’t go to interfere, I just wanted to be there…in case….something happened…he wanted/needed me…just because I needed to be close and know that he was o.k.
The first sharing trespass occurred when the nurse took him back and said he could only bring one person back with him; it was awkward. Not only did I want to be the one to go in, but I knew they would ask him about family histories (including his own) and I knew he didn’t know the bulk of what they would ask him. His girlfriend, thankfully, said, “You go, I’ll wait,” but it was uncomfortable and for a moment, which gratefully didn’t last too long, I felt guilty for going in without at least a modest protest.
Then, in the recovery room, the poor nurse didn’t know who to talk to. She kept looking at the both of us when she spoke and wondered who was going to take care of this poor boy/man. When the girlfriend kept speaking up and taking all the paperwork, it was pretty clear she intended on taking care of him in his post-op recovery. I remained at the foot of the bed while she was at his side, stroking his hair and holding his hand. I DIDN’T WANT TO SHARE!
I tried to listen to all the information so that I could help his healing process when I got phone calls of confusion from them (which I did). What was the first red flag was that she intended on taking him home to her house, but then leaving him just an hour later to go to work (leaving him alone). The nurse was a little alarmed by this – as was I – but for whatever offers of assistance I made (short of picking him up and carrying him to my car myself), I was told that he would be o.k. and if he needed anything, her mother could come sit with him because she was just a few minutes away.
My locked jaw didn’t last too long. I was quick to attribute her ill attempts of consideration to stupid youth, inexperience and not being a mom. But for all the crying out loud that I wanted to do but didn’t, I just wanted to know that he was going to be o.k. I wanted to be assured that if I did share, she was going to take care of what I was sharing with her.
One thing I think ought to be included in the sharing contract – “the person which is receiving the shared gift, is obligated to take care of said gift in like or better manner than the giver.”
I wondered if I would have felt differently if she were his wife today. I wondered if it would have been easier to share him as a gift rather than a loan.
I felt unhappy that I had to share today, yet I also feel bad I didn’t do a better job at sharing. I digress in my thoughts and take a step back to look at it from the other perspective and I can see all the things that Heavenly Father has shared with me. Have I taken care of said gifts in like or better manner than He?