There once was a cripple…
Who was not afraid to acknowledge that she was a cripple, nor to bear the deepest and most everyday facts of her private life, her wounds, to perfect strangers…
Every human being is unique, but we don’t always appreciate how different and special we are. I have always known that I am different, mostly because I was born with a genetic muscle wasting disease called Spinal Muscular Atrophy (type II). Although, if we met in person, my crumpled and crippled body in a wheelchair would probably be the first thing that you notice about me, I don’t share this fact as an introduction to who I am – for I am so much more than what my body can’t do. We are not meant to define ourselves by our limitations, though always, in wise humility, we recognize them.
How should I introduce myself to the world?
I’m not going to identify myself as a poet – but the beating of my heart is poetry.
I’m not going to identify myself as a theologian – but the light of my mind seeks the Source.
I’m also not going to identify myself as a writer (it seems that anyone with a blogging site could be called a “published” writer) – but I do process the experiences of my life through words, words that I keep and that I share.
I am not the author of my life – but the Author has given me free choice to edit as I go, and my improvisations will be the making or the breaking of this story.
I will not, in other words, identify myself here with nouns. I sense. I seek. I write. But, most importantly, I am.
I will, however, identify myself as a cripple. My genetic, progressively weakening and lifespan-shortening disease makes me completely physically dependent on others and as weak as waste – certainly a cripple. Forget political correctness. All of us who live and breathe in this terribly beautiful creation, which is other than Perfect Wholeness, are cripples in some way. We desire. We need. We lack. Each one of our stories might be terribly sad – but that we are being infinitely loved. And therein abides human dignity – and joy in the receiving and giving of divine love…
For God so loves humankind that God took the form of a slave, became one of us, incarnate, assuming all of the limitations – the sufferings and the joys – of the human body and a human life… to raise us up to the Divine.
© 2014 Christina Chase