While performing a medical examination, the practitioner asked a male relative of mine to say as many “F” words as possible, in as short a time as possible. Startled by official sanction to audibly release the four-letter word that immediately came to his mind, he obediently opened his mouth.
I wasn’t there but I can imagine it. He may have edged into it muttering at first. But soon the F bomb resounded like staccato in the otherwise sterile room, ricocheting off the walls, likely seeping out beneath the door. He’d just begun enjoying himself when he caught a glimpse of his examiner’s face, a peculiar mix of horror and amusement. Clearly, her instruction had a different intention. Not THAT word, she clarified, when she could speak again. She’d meant a variety of other words beginning with “F”.
I thought of that last night when a string of “F” words of my own came to mind; perhaps some that practitioner may have found more suitable. I had a birthday yesterday, and I went to bed feeling blessed by and deeply grateful for several things, all starting with “F” that have helped bring me to this age and stage.
Faith. I trust that God loves me, that he holds me fast, and that resting securely in his hands means nothing bad can happen — even those things that seem so at the time. That belief has been strengthened by the sixty-three years behind me, years filled with both joy and trials.
Family. We’re spread far by geography, interests, ages, situations and approaches to life. But without my family, near and far, past and present, close and distant, I could not have become the woman I am today. From the smallest tender leaf on my family tree to the oldest most weathered ones (some barely clinging, some fallen) they have loved, inspired, taught, helped and hindered me (just a few, but it has made me stronger). At this point I wouldn’t swap out a leaf.
Friends. I have always felt rich in my friendships. Deeply blessed, greatly amazed and entirely undeserving. But oh, so grateful.
Fitness. “Old people (???) can’t run,” one of the grandbeans reminded me the other day. Maybe not, but this Nana can still walk fast. Sometimes, depending on the situation, I even trot. Just ask my dog. I can also still touch my toes while standing.
Food. Since nothing has calories on one’s birthday, I indulged in birthday food without guilt. Today, I’ll behave, and courtesy of my dog and a good friend, I will walk it off. That works for me.
Finances. Somehow, someway, God has provided for every need. He has also granted the blessing of hard work and the gifts and abilities to perform it.
Fur, fuzz and feathers. My pets, my furry loves, always have, always will, remind me of God’s care and Jesus’ love.
Fun. Flowers. Fellowship… The string keeps lengthening. I hope to remember them if I’m ever in that same medical facility.
What are your “F” words?