Drive-by hope

by +CrystalThieringer    @cdthieringer


My husband calls it a drive-by.

Morning hasn’t really arrived yet and the cat wants to be fed. Apparently the wiggle of my toes translated to The Rouse in her ears, and like a good soldier, she is up and ready to be fed. She marches up and down my leg, stands at attention on my hip.

I ignore her.

She holds position on my chest, somehow managing to put her eight pounds on each of her four paws. Daggers, every one. She takes her little nose and her Elvis sneer and head bumps me.

I whine and roll over. She jumps off the bed, landing with a thudthud. She doesn’t have to do this, I know. This very same cat is quite capable of stealthily landing on the bed so that I don’t even know she’s there. She’s able to sneak her warmth against mine and I’m often surprised to realize she’s touching me.

Sometimes my lack of awareness freaks me right out.

She meows from the floor, pounces on the bed again. I roll over, pulling the blanket over my shoulder. Not to be deterred, she walks on the bed over to my nose, and nudges me with hers.

I am awake, and she knows it. She meow-registers her complaint, hops off the bed, walks in a circle on the floor, and hops up again. She may as well have thrown a basketball on the mattress.

I don’t want to wake up today.

I have to, of course, but hard things are happening and I’d just as soon sleep until they’re over. This is one of those days that could define “before” and “after”. Thanks-but-no-thanks, I think I’ll just skip it.

I’d rather not think at all.

My husband the peacekeeper has taken care of the cat (she loves him) and I hear water bouncing, low voice humming. The cat, now happily fed pounces on the bed again, hoping I’ll dangle ribbons for her to play with. This is another drive-by, a quick hello, a fleeting visit. I scritch her ears instead. She meows and leaves. I roll over again.

The black-out blinds at the window are drawn not-quite shut. I’d have shut them all the way, but my husband can sleep whether it’s dark or not. The crooked crack between the curtains lets the light get in.

A mental soundtrack nudges at my memory. An old hymn, played on yellowed organ keys by wrinkled, withered fingers. My Gram, singing along. “Yesterday, today, forever, Jesus is the same. All may change, but Jesus? Never. Glory to his name.”

Maybe it is a day that marks “before” and “after”. Maybe it isn’t, after all.

I move one curtain left, the other right. My husband turns the shower off and the cat scampers away to see when he’ll open the bathroom door for her.

Morning light caresses me. The drive-by has pointed me to hope. It’s the crack where the light came in.


The faithful love of the Lord never ends!
His mercies never cease.
Great is his faithfulness;
    his mercies begin afresh each morning.

Lamentations 3:22-23 NLT

8 thoughts on “Drive-by hope

    1. Thanks, Anne. Hope is always found in unexpected places, isn’t it?

  1. This flashback made me smile:
    An old hymn, played on yellowed organ keys by wrinkled, withered fingers. My Gram, singing along.

    I hope you are moving forward through your dark valley. Stop and rest, but keep walking. You’ve got this.

    1. Memories of my Gram always make me smile too, Denise. Thanks for your encouraging note.

  2. I understand this “hard things are happening.” Finding hope in those situations where we have no control. Such an odd paradox. Thank you for this gentle peek into your world.

    1. It is an odd paradox indeed. I hadn’t thought of that, but you’re right.

  3. Sad but beautiful, my friend. I think that’s just the way I’ve been feeling lately. Thanks for writing this.

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