My son, coughing so hard he loses his breath, finally sits down to rest a moment.
He’s been sick for several days.
He’s tired. And sad.
Who likes to be sick?
He’s feverish and chilled to the point of shaking.
His little sister (4) is is sitting close by. She is the one who was sick first. She is almost better now. She looks at him with sad eyes, pained that he is feeling bad.
I check his temperature. It’s high. He’s bundled up in my sweater, so I persuade him to take it off so his body won’t get too hot. But he’s SO cold…he says.
His little sister reaches out to touch him. His feet are purple because he’s so cold–his body caught between fever and chills.
She begins to rub his feet and bring back a little pink to his toes. She doesn’t notice that they are the feet of a barefoot boy who has been outside or that he didn’t wash them too well the last time he bathed. No, she just rubs them to warm them up.
“I love you,” he says to her.
“I love you, too,” she replies. And she keeps rubbing.
He looks over at me, looks at his little sister, and warns her that she might get sick if she’s around him.
Then he says to her, “if you ever got sick, I’d take your sickness for you. I’d be sick for you so that you wouldn’t have to be.”
I’d like to think that somehow I had something to do with his willingness to sacrifice for his little sister, but deep down, I know that God has given me a glance into His love.