Surprise—It’s Twins!

Nope, this isn’t my grampa. It’s Emlyn—and we’re twins!

.  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .

Before I started chemotherapy in 1999, my oncologist informed me that I had a 100% chance of losing my hair and as you can see, he was right. It’s pretty chilly being bald so it wasn’t long until I went hat shopping—a wig just wasn’t my style. I found a couple of cute fedoras for going out and some comfy beanies for kicking-back at home.

One day, when I was doing just that, I heard a knock at the front door. I opened it to find my neighbor Emlyn parked there in his wheelchair.

We’d always visited in the courtyard, at the mailboxes, in the parking lot, the laundry room—wherever our paths chanced to meet. But he’d never knocked on our door before. And there he was with an I’m-up-to-something look on his face.

“Uh, Emlyn…Hi,” I said. “What’s up?”

Emlyn smiled, reach his boney hand up to grab his hat and pulled it down into his lap. He sat up a little taller in his chair, raised his eyebrows and grinned.

He waited for my reaction. But I just stood there dumb-founded.

So he braced his hand against the frame of his wheel-chair and tried to force out a word. It rolled around in his mouth until he churned out slowly, “Sss-tholll-ih-dawrrr-rrruh-deee.”

I searched his face, trying to figure out what he’d just said. He leaned out toward me, as if I was hard of hearing, and conjured it up again, this time louder. “Ss-sss-tholll-iiih-dayerrr-ruh-deee.”

I tried to piece it all together but the word just wasn’t registering. He’d given me two chances. It was time to pull out the stenopad he kept tucked at his side for occasions like this.

Then it hit me: Solidarity.

“Solidarity!” I burst out. And finally, I realized that Emlyn’s once-prickly head was just as bald as mine!

He beamed. I teared up. And we said it in unison:


.  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .

I’ve been thinking lately about what encouraged me during my time with cancer. Emlyn’s visit was a great surprise and it was meaningful mostly because it was—so Emlyn.

A bit of ourselves. Isn’t that the most wonderful thing any of us can give.


5 Comments Add yours

  1. Connie Lambie Clark says:

    Mari, Mari, you are such a sweet,sweet blessing. I love you

    1. =) Thank you, God, for blessing Connie.

      “…I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.”
      —Ephesians 3:18-19

      [‘Just wanted to give you another extra wonderful blessing]

  2. Laura Smith says:

    A bit of ourselves is often one of the hardest things to give, but you are oh so right. Means so much when people give their time, emotion, or an act as selfless as giving up their hair to be an encourgement. Loved your post.

    1. It seems “not-so-hard” when I ask God to give me a clue as to what to do. Really, the things that encouraged me the most were mostly little things that people probably had no idea how “huge” they would be to me.

      I’ve been visiting with other women who have gone through cancer, too, and one of them gave this advice: As soon as the Spirit prompts you to do something, just do it…God orchestrates things and it’s probably just the thing the person needs. And to that I say Amen!

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your thoughts, Laura.

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