Thursday, September 23, 2010

The Calm Before the Storm

I don't know if I can accurately describe the roller coaster of emotions that I am currently experiencing. Each time we go into Children's Hospital I pray for Sammy and for me. I ask the Lord to watch over and comfort Sam helping him to stay calm, helping him to feel the comfort, embrace and love that only God can provide. I ask the Lord to guide me, comfort me and allow me to make the difficult decisions that seem to be a part of Sam's journey here on earth. Every day I ask the Lord to come into my life and guide me on this journey and to be with me every moment of every day...I simply can't do this alone.

Sam's journey has taught me to feel life...not just live it but to really feel it. I cry at sad movies, heck I can cry during commercials, I laugh out loud, I hug people more and I smile when I'm happy even if I'm all alone. My personality is pretty laid back meaning I can tolerate the repetition required to help Sam learn, I can usually respond to the incessant "Mom, Mom...Mom" with "Yes, love". I allow Sam to experience without the safety net of an overprotective mother so he can succeed or fail but always learn from the experience. I tell my children I love them sometimes more than they want to hear. I am beginning to view life through Sam's eyes. I worry less and love more....until my faith is tested. As I sat in the doctor's office listening to him describe the surgery Sam was going to endure I became numb but still attentive. I was listening but not feeling...God was protecting my heart. Sam played with his Ipad, a set of flashcards about emotions...seemingly unaware of the conversation around him...but I couldn't help but notice how he kept going back to the scared card. I had to be strong, I couldn't lose it...he was afraid and was looking to me to tell him that it was going to be okay. I was numb enough to let Sam walk over to Radiology in just his shirt and underwear, not even caring about our walk through the lobby to get there, I was oblivious to the reactions of those around me.

My emotions wanted to bust out all over that orthopedic department but I had only to look at Sam, that sweet innocent face trusting me...looking for the reassurance that only a mother can give. I put on my best smile, rubbed his back, kissed the top of his head breathing in the scent that is my child and I swallowed the pain that was welling up inside of me. I was amazed at the calm sound of my voice as I asked the many questions that were swirling around in my head. I realized that my prayers had been answered, it was only by the grace of God that I was holding together...that I took those deep calming breaths that seemed to quiet the storm of my emotions.

We left the office, I'm not sure who was trying to get away faster, Sam or I. Even with all they had just described about the condition of Sam's hips he still wanted to run to the parking structure...something Sam has always loved to do. Run out of this place and back into his life. My mind told me I should tell him to walk but my heart understood his need to run and I ran with him.

As I drove home I continued to remain calm although at times I felt tears well up in my eyes. My voice was strong as I answered each of Sam's questions about the things he saw outside the car windows. We got home and I put on his favorite channel and told him I was going to work on my computer in the other room. I told him I loved him and I closed the door. I opened the first website given to me by the doctor, read the first line of the description of the surgery and the flood gates opened, the emotion just poured out of me. I didn't question "Why" but instead my heart just hurt for Sam...for what he was going to have to go through...for the immobility we were going to have to impose...for the fear and uncertainty that is part of this journey. The hurt radiated from the depths of my soul. This was more than I could handle. People have always tried to comfort me by saying "God only gives us what we can handle". Really??? Please step into my shoes, feel what I am feeling, hurt like I am hurting and tell me if you can handle it. These decisions about a child that loves openly and freely, that enjoys the little things in life, a child whose understanding of the world is pure and without judgement or prejudice are beyond difficult. The weight of these decisions press on me and it is only with prayer that I am able to make them and put the final outcome into God's hands.

As Sam went to sleep last night, I couldn't pull myself away. I watched him sleep, so peaceful, so amazingly made. This little boy holds my heart and I love him with everything I am. I slept until 3:00 a.m. when the next wave of emotion hit me and I cried until the hurt no longer raged and just smoldered in my chest. Life hurts sometimes and this is definitely one of those times. I know that what challenges us also strengthens us...he and we will get through this too!

1 comment:

  1. Oh Sue, I feel your tears.

    God does not "give" us hardships to endure. He gives us strength and support to face hardships (and good times), but he does not "give" us the bad.

    When people say "God only gives us what we can handle" they are trying to comfort you (and themselves), but it doesn't work. Tired of this claim, I occasionally respond - If that was true how do you explain all the suicides and murders and addictions? God guessed the person's limits wrong?

    I will be praying for you and Sam.

    Jeanne Selep