One day when I was about six years old, my mother and I were walking down the road from the only store in Lincolnville, SC where I grew up. When we got to the small body of water about 1/4 mile from our home, my mother left the road and began to walk toward the water as if she was attempting suicide.

I cried and screamed for my mother not to enter the water. My little heart was being torn apart with the thought and the complete wonder of my mother leaving me for good. I know today that my mom never would have committed suicide. As an adult, I have come to understand the complete heaviness of the weight of things that can thrust you into a body of water with, perhaps, the thought of being washed of your heavy burdens.

After my mother waded in the water for a few minutes, she returned to my side and took my little hands and we continued to walk home. I don’t remember our conversation the rest of the way home. Those words are covered with the memories of my mother’s need to get relief from her burdens on that day.

Today, I have a little boy whose little hands I must hold on to and walk with him safely through these streets of life. The ‘by and by’ has reached my understanding. I now know, perhaps, what my mom was going through on that long walk home in Lincolnville that day.

Thank you, God, for giving me a child’s hand to hold on to when I can’t seem to feel yours- even though I know my hands are always in yours!!