Until my Parkinson’s progressed I never realised what a fine art it is pulling on a pair of socks. I always thought the challenge would be things such as tying up my shoelaces, but it appears that pulling on socks requires fine motor skills that are more sophisticated than those of tying shoelaces.
The Easter story has always resonated with me, but it has become even more deeply resonant as my bodily capacities deteriorate. For Easter is all about bodies. Easter is visceral. Good Friday tells the story of a body bloodied and bruised, of arms and legs held nailed to a cross, muscles screaming to stretch but unable, hands unable to lift a cup of water to parched lips, of a man who was once in full command of his body now reduced to dependence upon others for the merest comfort.
And then three days later resurrection. Having experienced the physical weakness of the cross, I wonder whether the resurrected body was even more sweet an experience for Christ. As life flowed once more through his veins and his body was not only brought back to life but made qualitatively different, never again to be subject to the violence of the cross nor the slow march of decay, were there moments of pure joy and exultation at the free movement of a fully able frame?
For that is the promise of Easter for those of us who struggle with some kind of physical disability, that once again it will be easy to bend down and pull on socks, that once more we will have that joyful experience of a body fully yielded to the will of its owner.
And it is of course part of the greater promise of bodies, hearts, minds, relationships, communities, and environment all liberated from the limitations and disablings of the present. How glorious it will be.