I get this weird sensation between my pinky and index fingers, like something essential is missing on that hand that’s closest to my heart. And though my body is intact, I rush my thumb and pinky in a swirling motion around my pinkies’ neighboring finger expecting something to move.

You tell me I’m beautiful when I sigh realizing the weight my finger feels is phantom. You tell me I am loved when I look down and nothing shimmers in the light.

Phantom limbs are apparently fairly common. When a limb is amputated, it is not irregular for the amputee to feel a a toe move, though their leg is no longer there. It isn’t uncommon for them to feel pain in their fingers when everything from their elbow down has been removed. I simply cannot imagine the kind of pain, confusion or sorrow this might bring a person.

I am missing nothing. I am entirely intact. Yet nothing is whole quite the same.

Still my fingers, my mind, my soul realizes something is gone that used to be part of me. Something is missing. My sensitivity to wind where metal used to protect. And most of the week I get by just fine. And then Sunday hits and I realize its’ pillows I’ve cuddled through the night, and sunnyside eggs and a sermon in sweats will never be the same. I’ll listen to you Lord. You call me beautiful. I know by You I’m still loved.

I can’t quite stand well on Sundays. Putting on jeans just doesn’t feel the same. And I don’t care for this phantom pain.

I get this weird sensation between my pinky and index fingers, like something essential is missing. And still You call me beautiful and I cannot understand but its me You claim to love. By this, and this alone I find fullness & wholeness by the measure of God. Phantom limbs and all.