After Dan’s shoulder surgery a week ago, my normally incredibly independent and active husband has had to rely on me for many of his most basic needs. He has done the same for me in the past after ankle and shoulder surgeries, and I am happy to return the favor. There is a special connection that comes from trusting someone with your vulnerability during times like these, and I had a moment today that pierced my heart with its simplicity, intimacy, and beauty.
I came home at lunch to help Dan take a shower and change his bandages. As the surgery was on his right shoulder and he is right-handed, everything is challenging for him right now. We have fallen into a routine with shower time, and I got the water going and put out a clean towel and washcloth, along with soap and shampoo in preparation. The first order of business was to wash Dan’s hair. He closed the curtain and stood under the stream of water, and when he was ready I began to massage the shampoo into his hair and scalp.
As I washed his hair, he stood there with his eyes scrunched tight, making funny faces at me and making me laugh. I thought about the man he is, his courage, devotion, his kindness- and his wonderful goofiness. Suddenly, I felt an overwhelming tenderness and love for him filling my heart. I leaned in and kissed his wet and soapy forehead, telling him, “I love you so much.” He broke into the most beautific smile at that, eyes still scrunched tight, saying “Right back at’cha, Slick.” (His signature line.)
I look forward to Dan being healthy, strong, and active again, but while he’s in this difficult place of healing and incapacity, I am so grateful to be able to be here for him. Life certainly takes its twists and turns, but even in the challenges we can be reminded of our many blessings- and I count love as the greatest blessing of all.