Here is the other Maria who helps me to care for Sophie. She is not only a caregiver for Sophie but also for her husband. She is a beautiful woman who makes nutritious breakfasts for Sophie a few mornings a week, gently combs through and braids her hair, wipes her face and brushes her teeth, dresses her beautifully and takes her out for a walk. She plays music with Sophie, talks to her and to me before I leave for work.
Those of you who know, know that it’s a relationship unlike any other — the relinquishment of your child’s utterly dependent body and spirit to another. When someone is devoted to one’s child and her care, the dance of intimacy and trust is intricate and careful. I do not take Maria and Maria for granted and am aware every time they come into my house that I am fortunate and blessed. When they finish working, because it is a job, I carry the rest, try not to imagine a time without them.
I think of what it means to care
to give care
how it’s given received held