Every time I spotted her, I cringed. She needed washing, but to wash her would destroy her. To destroy her would be ruination and despair – but she was nearing ruin regardless. Something had to be done, her eyes told me something had to be done – her days of providing nightly cuddles to a precious daughter were not over, her comforting presence essential still to more than one of us.

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Looking at her was like having split vision – Her “self” was beautiful, precious, luminous but her “physical” presence struck terror along my spine. She was both things – a most beautiful ugly.

I have been avoiding the task of repairing her, fearful and timid. Fretting that … it couldn’t be done. I struggled to see how I was going to repair her while preserving her being in the process. So worn through were her layers, layers I had already patched over, and over through the years.

I had covered her face once already hoping and praying at the time I would never have to do it again. Each time, I lay my heart out and pray I will not erase her, extinguish her. She is family, she is loved.

But I was mindful that even as she was, all tattered and torn, my daughter wrapped her up tenderly in a blanket each night before cuddling her close to her heart, breathing over her nightly prayers. She was loved despite everything, loved to tatters, loved through the tatters. A love beyond all.

Love which could not be smudged out because of some fabric and alterations. And so it has been days of turning her round and round, pulling up old stitches and patches, testing the fragile underneath bits, fashioning new coverings, gingerly stitching around the foundations of our much beloved Foophie, and trusting love will hold us, will carry us through.

It has felt important.

It has felt … personal.

The image of her ragged self – reflective of my own ragged, tattered self. The one beneath the layers. The one I hide with the skill of a master of disguise – the one I am careful to wrap up in blankets, but buried instead of held, whispered about but not prayed over, hidden.

But loved? Loved over despite my need of washing, my fluff spilling out, my stains, and worn out patches?

This,too, a most beautiful ugly?

The answer is ever and always there, gently pulling out stitches.

Yes. You are loved. Beautiful, precious, and luminous.

This is Humility.

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The #wholemama word of the week is: Humility.  Read more words about humility here at Overflow.