Some years ago she learned to dance lying on the floor, moving to the rhythm of the music. I learned from friends that she was committed to teaching others with similar needs this fairly recent technique. In one of her poems she describes the struggle, and the ultimate elation of being able to dance. Here are a few lines.
Music filled the space about me . . . . . Move!
I must move … I must dance . . . .And so I did.
This unwarranted ego will not deny me
The pure freedom and enjoyment of which dance does bring.
On her tummy!
Charlotte – a brave woman of high intellect and profound faith.You entered by the front door from the pavement into the narrow vestibule, turned left into the living room. You did not see Jess immediately, although she would probably have seen you coming, depending on the direction of your approach. You called because she was house-bound, permanently bed-ridden. You called in friendship, to offer comfort and good cheer. If you happened to be the pastor, nothing less was acceptable.
She sat in bed – her body virtually immobile, the prisoner of rheumatoid arthritis. But not her tongue, her mind, her spirit. Faith was alive in her! You called and in a short time you knew it was not you but she who would minister: encourage, restore hope, cheer you on your way. She was the ministering angel.
O Joy that seekest me through pain,
I cannot close my heart to thee;
I trace the rainbow through the rain,
and feel the promise is not vain,
that morn shall endless be.
Singing the Faith 637: George Matheson, (1842 – 1996).