We Need Each Other
My Road Goes Ever On
I Need Other People
We Need Each Other is a basic fact of life. Our actions affect others and other people change us. What we make of the exchange is up to us.
I haven’t been able to find the lid to my coffee mug for weeks. How I have survived is one of life’s little mysteries. Still, it bothered me. The lid shouldn’t be missing. I needed it.
So when I was high-tailing it out of the kitchen, prepping for a mission into town, I happened to mention to daughter #4 with an aimless wave in the direction of the kitchen cabinets, “If you ever find my coffee mu—”
Before I could complete my perfectly manicured English sentence, she climbed a stool, thrust her hand into the dark interior of said cabinet, and held up a mug top that looks strangely like my missing salvation.
“How’d you do that, honey?”
She grinned. “It was right here, Mom.”
Yeah. Right. “I only tore that cabinet limb from limb three times looking for—oh, never mind.”
And when my closet door decided to fling itself off the runner and lean like a drunken possum hanging from its tail, it should’ve just slipped back into place when I clicked it onto its proper track. Except it wouldn’t. No matter how hard I shoved, begged, or threatened.
I casually mentioned to son #2—“By the way my closet door is having a mid-life cri—” and he trotted into the room, turned a screwdriver, hammered something-or-another, and suddenly, the door was back on its best behavior.
I considered opening cases for canonization but then remembered that a person probably ought to be dead before we start that process. Besides, these weren’t exactly miracles. Just good deeds that, for some reason, I couldn’t accomplish even if someone threatened me with thirty years of matching unmatchable socks.
The big mystery here is not that things go wrong. Or that I can’t fix them. Or even that others can do what I can’t. It’s that someone can mosey along and do with relative ease what was clearly impossible five minutes before.
It’s as if certain people—at a particular moment in time—are given the magical key to instant success. To say the right word to a confused kid. To lift a broken heart out of the muck. To patch an ego. To embrace the loneliest spirit in the world. Find the lost item. Or lost soul.
These little happenings happen all the time. At least to me. Maybe that’s because I’m always losing, breaking, or mismatching things. Maybe God pities me and sends whatever salvation He can scratch up from my immediate surroundings.
Or maybe, God likes to remind me that I need other people. That I’m not on this journey alone and that no matter how hopeless I may be at finding coffee lids or hanging wayfaring doors, I might just have the sock somebody else has been looking for.
A. K. Frailey is the author of 17 books, a teacher for 35 years, and a homeschooling mother of 8.
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“I loved reading Ann’s wise, hope-giving thoughts about life and love. Truly, life is the art of overcoming obstacles and becoming stronger to live a fuller life. Beautiful work!”~Ksenia
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