There was something in me that needed to see for myself. I had had the supernatural miracle of an encounter with the divine messenger, but I needed to see the supernatural made natural: a woman who couldn’t be pregnant, miraculously pregnant. Sometimes we need to see it in someone else before we can truly believe it for ourselves.
What about the mother who is struggling with an invisible physical infirmity (eg back problems or injury post-birth) who can lift their baby but not at the same time as dealing with a buggy, AND they have depression, and so asking for help with a buggy would push them over the edge into sobbing, and they would just have to leave the bus rather than be able to move? What makes one disability trump another?
I was dismayed to see that when another friend on Facebook posted a ‘first trip out on the bus with my baby’ status, a friend of hers shared the article with the bus ruling, with the comment ‘don’t worry, now you don’t have to give up your place to a wheelchair user. No one can make you move.’ Certainly the way this is being reported is “now buggy users and wheelchair users have equal rights.”
And at some point, the wind changed, blown by God’s spirit. After my years of silence, I finally have things to say, and I am not holding back. The strangest thing is that now when I call my people a brood of vipers they listen, they nod, they can’t get enough of it.
If you had told us even a year ago that Jon would be a ‘professional’ artist, and an expert on art history, we would have been very surprised. I love that after even so many years we are discovering new talents to celebrate in one another (my writing was a similar surprise to us both) as our lives bend and shift together.
The people think, of course, that nothing will happen. They think because they are rich, they are safe. They have no idea how quickly things can turn around, how speedily their world can implode.
She is my hero, because, like Job, she endures. We admire those who climb mountains and endure freezing temperatures, and history applauds them. But where are the records and awards for those who climb mountains of pain and isolation, day after day, for decades?
I laughed, but I wanted to punch someone. I wanted to say to God’s messenger, “You have a pretty sick sense of humour. It has been too long. It’s over. You can’t just keep promising things when we both know it is never going to happen. Stop lying to me.”