The Luckiest Woman in the Room

There comes a time, for each one of us, when we have enough.

That time may slip by like silent petals released from a flower. Unnoticed. Quietly, in muted glory our enough time, faded away before we could hold it.

But it was there.

For some, it comes a little louder. And it follows us like a dream. At the doctor’s today with my son, his annual check-up for his marks and moles — I had enough. I knew no place existed on the planet more perfect than that small exam room where I waited with my son. His legs crinkling the white paper runner on the table and my daughter scrubbing her boots along the linoleum.

We’d left a waiting room full of angry patients. Scowls under scarves and coughs I’ve heard all winter. A television blaring death and fire and brimstone on the news above our heads. Every eye in the room glued to it or to the floor.

And I thought of that waiting room like a distant day, something far off — the outside world — as my little girl spun on the doctor’s stool and my son sprawled out on the table and everything perfect and holy to me sat right there in front of me. Enveloped me. Held me.

The luckiest woman in the room.

The tiny exam room. Waiting to hear what we prayed would be good news. He’s had three surgeries, my little guy. Three scares. And he’s come out blazing like the sun after each one. Like the greatest gift. A gift I released each time as he was shot through with general anesthesia and I was shoved out of the operating room. A gift I clung to through the walls through the hours until I held him again.

And today, seeing him a little taller, a little more “grown-up” now at six years old, his hair tousled and due for a cut, his eyes bright and full of love and innocence I had enough. I knew it. Felt it. Heard it, in my daughter’s voice as she bounced on the scratchy pull-out step at the bottom of the exam table.

The doctor came in, smooth and smiling and as she checked my son the florescent light glinted off her jeweler’s loupe and we heard good news. And the exam room shrank and held just the doctor, my children and me, and I had enough.

No winter sun today. We left the doctor’s office crunching through frozen slush in the crowded parking lot under a haze of storm clouds. My children’s hands in mine and my heart full and the land around me hours away from another snow. No sun today, but it shined on me just the same. I seized my enough, and carried it home, with my kids safely buckled, sitting right behind me in the car, and I felt so thankful to be the luckiest woman in the room. To have my enough.

Winter Sunrise, Snake River


20 thoughts on “The Luckiest Woman in the Room

  1. I so know how you feel. It’s a relief beyond any comparison. When I heard “no evidence of any leukemia cells” from my daughter’s oncologist, I could actually breathe again. I’m so happy for your “enough” as I’ve had mine, too. What a moving post, Melissa. Loved it.


  2. YAY!!!!!!!!! What super news! I love your description of the waiting room and of the feeling of gratitude we get when spending those precious, scary moments with our six year olds. I know, as of late, that feeling well. xoxo


  3. I remember when my now 6 year old was 9 months old and was running high fever. she had to be hospitalized and i was dead worried. I can imagine what you must have gone through esp with that kind of news… but all ends well that ends well !! Cheers !


  4. I’m so happy for you and I just love this description of feeling ‘enough’. What an antidote to the constant societal scream of…more, better, harder!!! You write so beautifully and with such heart – thanks for another inspiring post.


  5. Life isn’t what’s on the front page or in the latest viral video. It’s in those fleeting moments and tiny details. For most of us, they pass by as you said — unnoticed. But you have a gift for seeing them, and turning them into words and phrases that allow us to recognize ourselves, and appreciate what we might otherwise have missed. Thank you for sharing this good news, and your wonderful enough feeling. In the process, you’ve reminded the rest of us that life can be filled with such moments and details, if we only remember to look for them.


  6. Beautiful, Melissa, truly brilliant! I’m thrilled to hear the wonderful news. May He bless you with an abundance of ‘enough’ moments, and may you and your lovely family always enjoy good health, happiness and a strong bond of togetherness. God bless!


  7. Oh how I have missed you Melissa – and oh, how happy I am for your good news. That waiting room was full indeed; full of a mother’s love and gratitude for having “enough” right there to hold in her heart.


  8. I have read many of your posts, and this one helped me to determine who’s writing you reminded me of. Two well-known writers; Janette Oke (Love Comes Softly) and Robert Frost use the same depth of “in the moment” description that you do. If you ever decide to put your blogs into a book form, contact me.


  9. I’m so glad to hear the good news. It is a true gift indeed to be able to see past all the noise, confusion and uncertainty of life to those quiet, still moments that matter more than all the rest. And then an even greater gift to be able to express them so clearly in powerful words so that others can share in them and hopefully along the way find their own moments and their own words. May God continue to watch over you and your family, and may He bless you abundantly!


    1. PS: I tagged you in a blog challenge. Challenging, it is, too! If you’d prefer no to play, I completely understand! It’s time consuming, and I know how little of that there is sometime. Have missed you.


  10. I know how good that news must be, that’s so wonderful! Realizing what a gift that represents is hard to put into words, but you did, beautifully.


  11. Great news Melissa. And as always you are simply brilliant with your words. I too wish many such moments of happiness, joy and togetherness for you people.


  12. What great news… what a moving blog it warms my heart that all is well with your son and I pray that he continues to stay healthy and grow. I too am thankful for a child that struggles through life… while he is much smaller than yours the struggle is still the same. My grandson was born 11 days before his due date and was taken from my daughters arms before he was 24 hours old. He was placed in another hospital while his mother stayed at the one he was born in. Today will be his first night home with his mother after spending 3 weeks in the NICU. What a blessing it is that finally he gets to come home and is doing better… he still needs to gain weight and maintain it, we are hopeful that this will happen. We as mothers know what it is like to have a child or know a child that had a difficult start at life. My little grandson has been tested to see if he has Cystic Fibrosis and still we wait for those results and I pray that God will take those test results under his wing as he will with this child and make him well.


  13. Like you, nothing makes me more content than seeing my two young daughters happy and healthy. Living in our moments is truly a gift to treasure everyday. Your writing is touching, real and inspiring! Thank you!


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