A friend of mine uses the word “whole” to describe a certain type of individual. When he says the word he makes a gesture, an unmistakable expression of fullness and form enough to hold something of worth. When you are around this type of “whole” person, the experience is different. They are not their wounds or scars, their triumphs or adventures–they just are and they are rare. Regardless of personality, story, gender, or appearance, you get a sense that around them you can simply be. It doesn’t matter what you say or how you say it or whether you say anything at all. You are heard.
On a Father’s Path, all paths lead home. Some are longer, some are more circuitous, but once you become connected with someone who is “whole” the path makes more sense. I have been blessed to be with such a person for 30 years. Her grace is quiet and constant. For their entire school careers, she rose each morning to greet the boys and the day, wishing them well whether in the car, through their cereal box fortress, or at the front door. Her tireless ritual, her ceaseless giving, and understanding is just a sample of how she holds us all… It’s something we should all aspire to.
And it’s not just the boys at home base. Year after year she has given heart and soul to countless children in the artificial brackets of a school year. And I see her hold them as she walks in the door at home, as only someone who is whole can do. When I think of how fortunate my sons have been to be blessed with a mother who has given fully since the day she “knew” they were coming, I can only imagine when the light goes on for them… Someday. Maybe on the path. Who knows? But they say you can only give what you have received. Well, it’s there. It has been given. And it is ready to be given again for it is not meant to be held, but to hold.