The Ladies I Prayed For

I saw a lady at the doctor’s office. She had 4 kids. Well, I think she had 4 kids. She had what seemed like a whole lot of kids. The older two seemed to have special needs and she was pushing a double stroller. “She has her hands full,” my mom said. I thought she could really use some help–she should never have to travel alone to the doctor with all those children.

I saw a lady at the park. She was wearing a baby harness across her chest and was attempting to play with her toddler. It was 5 o’clock in the evening, but it was still 80 degrees out. She was wearing black yoga pants, a burgundy tank top and a tired face. I thought maybe she was tired from being at work all day yet she felt guilty and still trucked her kids to the park. Or maybe she was just trying to make it until her husband got home from work so he could give her some relief.

I saw a lady walking down the street. In fact, she was in the street because sidewalks are hard to come by in this city. I had to swerve around her to avoid hitting her double stroller and the car that was coming towards me. As I went around her I noticed she had a baby strapped to her chest. Why was this lady out with all of her children on this busy street? Why is she taking a walk with all of those children?

I felt bad for being such a jugde-y (I know that’s not a word) person today. I was not usually this bad, but I was tired. I was so tired that I was not even tired anymore. And all of my good person ways had flown right out the window. I was no different from these ladies. My day which had started at 6 in the morning had led me to encounter all of those other mothers who, like me, were just trying to make it to the next moment.

On that day, it was impossible. I even just stopped trying. I had made it all the way until the sun went down. I was pushing. I was working hard, but I just could not do any more.

I wondered about the other ladies I had encountered that day. I wondered if they were lying in their beds unable to move or if they were still going. Was the lady at the doctor just now getting dinner on the stove? Was the lady in the park still waiting for her husband to come home? Was the lady in the street still trying to get her children off to bed?

I wished I could tell them I was thinking of them. I wished they were able to get some rest. I prayed we would all be able to wake up and see our children….and do it all over again.