I’m sitting in my chair in the living room listening to my youngest son scream at the top of his lungs. This is the fourth time I have tried to get him to sleep in his crib, and he screamed for an hour the first two times… an hour and a half the third time and now it’s been two and a half hours. My stomach hurts, I can’t stop myself from rocking the chair like I’m some how going to soothe him from out here and I’m pretty sure that listening to your child scream like this is psychological torture. Our pediatrician is totally supportive of letting babies cry it out, but I HATE IT. She said that no baby has ever died from crying, it was actually in one of her textbooks, but I HATE IT. I know he needs to learn how to soothe himself to sleep, but I HATE IT. I can literally see and hear every single thing that happens in the nursery, but guess what? I HATE IT.
I have several friends whose children are dealing with some seriously heavy medical issues and it totally blows my mind. They are dealing with normal baby stuff like teething, gas, attitudes, crawling, walking, laughing, crying… and they have all these other added challenges. Back braces, brain surgery, wheel chairs, cancer, chemotherapy, medication. It literally makes my heart ache. I have been through surgery, chemo and the sicknesses and pain that come with those and I cannot even fathom caring for a child who feels like I felt. I want to hug those babies, I want to rock them and love them while their mamas close their eyes knowing that another mama is loving on their baby. I want to be able to say something, anything, to let them know that I can and will help in any way that I can. Stupid geography will not allow me to do that, my mouth will not form any sufficient words, and I do not want to bother these families with platitudes.
At church we talked about a few of the things that people say to comfort you, like how God doesn’t give you more than you can handle. That is my least favorite saying… God NEVER promises us that! He promises that He will always be with us.
No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and He will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation He will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.
-1 Corinthians 10:13
The escape He provides is Him, at least that is my understanding. I truly believe in clinging to God through all trials, but I really hate when people say things that make it seem like cancer is God’s plan, that God planned on giving a child cancer. I am completely positive that is NOT how God works. I don’t know why God allows bad things to happen, but I do know that God can take the bad things and lead you to use them for His glory.
Even as I type that I know that it sounds self-righteous, it’s easy for me to write that when it’s not my child who is sick. I have dealt with my own trials. I dealt with fertility struggles for years, during that time I failed miserably to cling to Him when I should have. Then I got pregnant! With TWINS. Then I had to be flown by helicopter at 27 weeks pregnant to a special hospital because I was going into labor way too early. My boys were born at 29 weeks, and they were incredibly strong and healthy. They came home after only a month in the NICU. We had a few amazing and exhausting years, then I got sick, when my miracle twins were only two years old. I had surgery, went through chemo and went into remission! Then we were very surprised when we found out I was pregnant again! My big second miracle pregnancy was crazy and miserable, but I was healthy and so was my little boy. Through all of this I kept clinging to God, I wasn’t perfect, but I tried… and I will continue to try for rest of my days. I do not understand why babies get sick or why people die suddenly, why it was so hard for me to get pregnant, why I am an alcoholic, or why my husband has to deploy but I do know that it’s all easier when I rely on God. Things still suck and life can still be really hard, but I find comfort in the arms of Christ and want that for everyone.
My great-grandmother highlighted a verse in my first bible and it comforts me.
Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? Yet not one of them will fall to the ground outside your Father’s care. And even the very hairs of your head are all numbered. So don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.
It tells me that God knows every single creature in the universe and cares about them… so no matter how small I feel, to God I am important and He loves me completely.
Despite my (hopefully) wise words, I still have no idea what I am doing,