A Basket-Full of Worries

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This is a story I wrote a while ago about letting go of our worries.

She was tired. She had been walking down this road for a long time. How long? She couldn’t be sure, which in itself was quite worrying. But what was confusing her most was that now she seemed to be carrying a basket.

She definitely didn’t have a basket in her hand a couple of minutes ago. Where had it come from?  As she looked at the basket she realised it was full of stones.

As she continued walking, she became aware of footsteps beside her. It was a man. “You look worn out,” he said. “Maybe we should stop beside that tree and have a rest.”

She should have been surprised, but wasn’t. She recognised his voice. It was one she had heard in her childhood, when she felt scared. She hadn’t heard it for a long time, though. Something about the man made her feel safe, so she agreed to rest with him.

When they reached the tree, the man turned to her. “What’s in your basket?” He asked.

“Just some stones,” she replied, feeling foolish.

“I can carry them for you,” he said.

She was about to agree. But then she looked down at the basket. The stones really were beautiful she thought.

As she picked one up, a picture of her home appeared on it.

“Let me take that stone from you.” Said the man, lovingly.

“No, this is important, it’s my house.”

“Give it to me. Your burden will be lighter.” His voice was kind, and she trusted him, but she was scared.

She thought of the time she had spent choosing things for the house and decorating it; making it beautiful for her family.

“You do not need to worry about where you live, I will provide you everything you need. I will be your home now, forever.”

It was hard, but she handed the stone to the man. She felt lighter.

She picked up the next stone, on it appeared a picture of the place where she worked.

“I can take that one form you as well,” said the man. “Your burden will be lighter.”

She thought about her work, she always felt so important and in control when she was there.

“Trust me. You no longer need to find your worth in the work that you do. You can find your worth in me.”

It was hard but she handed the stone to him. Again, she felt lighter.

That evening, as the sun was setting, she handed many stones to him. Soon there were only two left in the basket.

She picked one up. On it appeared a picture of her family. She could not possibly give this stone to the man.

“What’s on that stone?” Asked the man, although she sensed he already knew the answer.

She felt tears running down her cheeks. “It’s my family, I can’t give you my family.”

The man said their names. “You can trust me, I know them and I love them too. Give them to me and I will take care of them too, I will keep hold of them. You do not need to be afraid.”

With pain like she had never felt before she handed him the stone. She really did trust him, and knew that he would take better care of them than she ever could.

“This last stone is the hardest one,” said the man. As she picked it up she a picture of her heart appeared on it. “Give me your heart, and I will give you a new one.”

She felt her blood pumping through her body. How could she give him her heart? But she trusted him.

“Allright,” she said, expecting to feel pain, like she did with the last stone. She didn’t. She felt joy like she had never felt before. She felt free.

“You are my child now,” said the man, taking hold of her hand. “I will never let you go.”

Suddenly a sping appeared next to to them.

“You are thirsty,” said them man. “Go and take a drink.”

The water was the sweetest thing she had tasted. It was like she had been thirsty her whole life, but just hadn’t realised it.

The man spoke to her again. “You need to continue your journey. You won’t see me for a while, but I will always be with you. You do not need to be afraid of anything.”

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