Monday, March 16, 2009

Comfort in Difficult Times

Last night I was watching  a television show where all of the main characters are police officers. One of the policemen was shot, and his female colleague's father stopped by to check on his daughter, fearing for her safety.

At the end of their brief conversation, he father handed her a saint's medallion. I don't recall which one; but I remember that he was the patron saint of lost causes. As he handed the medallion to his daughter, he said, "If you're anything like me, you don't believe in any of this mumbo jumbo. But this has brought me a lot of comfort in difficult times."

The moment really struck me. I'm not a big believer in "mumbo jumbo" either. But I consider myself an agnostic who is open to all possibilities. I don't believe in pretending to know what the right answer is about God, the after life, the purpose of our existence, etc. I feel that people - believers and non-believers alike - who think that they know the absolute truth are just kidding themselves.

At any rate, the reason that this scene in a little TV show struck me is because I have a similar "talisman," if you will. A few years ago, at a Christmas party, I won a "saints" bracelet in a "Yankee swap." I was thoroughly charmed by the trinket.

The thing is that I often find myself wearing my saints bracelet on days when I'm feeling a little down, or on days when I know I might have a tough day, or on days when something big is going to happen. It gives me a great deal of comfort.

I'm not sure why this is. I suppose it's just nice to think that someone might be looking out for you when you need it most. Or maybe, if you get raised with a belief system, there's a part of you that never stops believing, on some level.

I love my saints bracelet. I'll be wearing it tomorrow when my mother has her open heart surgery. I suspect that it will bring me comfort.

1 comment:

Patricia said...

In high school I asked for and got a St. Christopher Medal for Christmas. A few months later, my friend moved away and we traded. I gave him my medal (because he was traveling) and he gave me his key ring with a volkswagon symbol on it. The volkswagon symbol fell off years ago, but I still use the key ring. It has become a talisman of sorts for me. It connects me to friends long departed from my daily life.

My thoughts are with your mother.