When I Carry Him

When we were young and enamored.

When we were young and enamored

A couple of nights ago, I had a dream about my husband. In this dream, hubby was trying to help me with chores around the house. But he was very tired and, out of his exhaustion, kept doing nonsensical things that served only to frustrate me and add to my workload. At the end, he stood next to the stove talking to me as I prepared dinner.

Suddenly, his eyes closed and he slumped facedown toward the pots of boiling liquid. I caught him just in time and guided him safely to the floor. But what to do now? I needed to get him upstairs to bed, but in real life, he weighs about 100 lbs. more than I do. I can barely lift our 5-year-old, who weighs only 50 lbs.

But in my dream, I decided to try anyway. And as I gathered him into my arms, I discovered—to my great astonishment—that I could lift him. He was still heavy, but not beyond my strength. So I carried him up the stairs and put him to bed.

I’ve had many vivid and meaningful dreams in my lifetime, but none as emotionally loaded as this one. You see, my husband just started taking classes again—three this semester—while still working full time. I work full-time as well. We have a new baby. And his job is switching him to the midnight shift for this week.

This morning, I texted my husband to ask him if he would arrive home in time to see the kids off to daycare. I pulled out of the driveway with both children in tow, only to discover my husband’s car parked at the curb. He was inside the house the whole time, sleeping in the office. I didn’t even notice.

It’s really crazy at my house, ya’ll.

A while back, I wrote about the meaning of the word “helpmeet” in the Bible. Its meaning is similar to “succor” or “salvation.” The same word is often used to describe God. Understanding this word has helped me to understand my true calling as a wife. Sure, I could choose to focus on the chores aspect, but that’s not what it’s really about. (Which is good, because I’m a terrible housekeeper.) It’s about protecting his heart. It’s about being a refuge for him. It’s about helping to shoulder the loads he carries when they become too heavy.

And they’re getting awfully heavy.

I believe there’s something prophetic about this dream. It has that feel about it. I don’t know what all it means. But what surprised me was my ability to carry him—and my joy in doing it. Because there were many times in the past that I tried to carry others and became terribly wounded in the process. People I shouldn’t have carried. Two years ago, I decided I couldn’t carry anyone anymore and needed someone to carry me for a while.

But this time, I know I’m carrying the right person. I have shed many burdens that would have prevented me from carrying him now. And I know it won’t be this way forever. One day, he will return, rested, with strength to stand.

I don’t know all the challenges that lie ahead. But I know now that I am strong enough to carry him.

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2 responses to “When I Carry Him

  1. I like your interpretation of the dream.

    A possible alternative relates to the theory that the various people in our dreams are different aspects of ourselves. The dream is the symbolic representation of the way the mind is attempting to balance everything out. You did say how crazy things are in your life right now. The prophetic part could be the Spirit reassuring you that no matter how crazy it gets you will be given the strength to succeed.

  2. “An aching head requires a soft pillow and a tired back a strong support.” – Anne Bradstreet

    I’ve often thought of this quote in relation to being a “helpmeet” -the strange combination of gentleness and strength. What a powerful dream – I hope you are given strength upon strength to get through this difficult season. Thank you for continuing to write through it all!.

    -Also, I appreciate the idea that there are some people that we are not required to carry. An attempt to do so can actually result in injury to both parties. We have to be wise in our relationship to others – even if our first instinct is to help.
    -Jean