Saturday, September 8, 2012

Questioned Motives

Well it has happened. Mom K knows I am Vicky but thinks that I have kept my marriage to her son Arvo a secret for all these years. This was a hard won victory. I had to first convince her that I wasn't a hussy who had stolen her husband (who she insists is Arvo) from her. I convinced her of that dubious victory, of only being guilty of a secret marriage, with logic. We sat on the porch in front of the assisted living home, while I tried to patiently work through the tangle in her brain to help her understand that I was not the rotten, conniving trollop that she thinks I am. She does remember her grandkids, my three children. I asked who was their mother, and she did know I was their mother. She scowled when I asked her who was their father, as she had to admit that she couldn't be the grandmom unless her son was the father of the grandkids. And then she realized the son could therefore not be her husband, but she was determined I was still in some way a trouble maker. So then she told me that only yesterday she had discovered I had married Arvo. (We have been married 32 years). She was livid that we had lied to her and kept it a secret. At that point, I figured I had stretched her far enough and we talked about dancing at weddings to distract her.

The strange thing is, while she was accusing me of all this evil, I felt very guilty. And ashamed of who I was. I was not guilty of what she thought I was guilty of, but I am certainly guilty of plenty of other awful stuff. I left there feeling battered. Arvo, on the other hand, returned from his day of work and then his daily visit with his mom saying she seemed to know he was her son this time. He needed a reprieve, so I am glad for his sake. Up till now, I had just been the tender loving daughter in law who Mom K said she could never repay. It was much easier to be treated like that instead of being falsely accused of being so evil.

I know, of course that it is not her speaking, that it is the aging, confused problems inside her head. But it made me think of how easy it is to misunderstand others, to attach evil motives to behavior that one doesn't comprehend fully. How fragile relationships are! How easily wounded by careless words, thoughtless actions, or misinterpretations. I had just a touch of an understanding of how Jesus must have felt, coming to save the world, and being tortured and abhorred instead.

As I helped Mom K back into bed, I had to lift her to keep her from falling off the edge and then gently placed her safely in the middle. She wanted a glass of water, but the water I got her wasn't cold enough. I found a bottle of refrigerated water and poured that for her instead. She approved that with a curt nod. I kissed her goodbye and trotted off to go pick Asherel up from her class. i could tell that even though Mom K was somewhat mollified sipping her cold water, she was still not convinced. I could see she was thinking , "Vicky may be a hussy, but at least she is a helpful hussy."

Jeremiah 4:22 (NIV)
“My people are fools; they do not know me. They are senseless children; they have no understanding. They are skilled in doing evil; they know not how to do good.”

Romans 10:19-21 (NIV)
Again I ask: Did Israel not understand? First, Moses says, “I will make you envious by those who are not a nation; I will make you angry by a nation that has no understanding.” [20] And Isaiah boldly says, “I was found by those who did not seek me; I revealed myself to those who did not ask for me.” [21] But concerning Israel he says, “All day long I have held out my hands to a disobedient and obstinate people.”

-save a dog-

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