Thursday, March 10, 2011

A Parent’s Pain

I wasn’t really planning for a theme but it seems I have another blog post that ties into the first song on my playlist and my final thoughts about it. They came to me at a strange time after a long and tiring day. I have recently begun reading a magazine called Guildposts. It’s a Christian magazine with stories about regular people and famous ones too….and how they’ve found faith, found hope….found God. Admittedly it’s filled with too many ads and some features I could take or leave but last night I read an article that really spoke to me.
This women was writing about God speaking to her at various points in her life. She was being treated for breast cancer and during one of her treatments she began to feel very alone, isolated and full of fear and worry.
But she also began to feel God’s love in way that she never had before and through eyes that had never seen it this way before. She remembered times that she had seen her own children afraid and hurt and remembered the times she had worried about them. She remembered those experiences and the fierce love it have evoked in her for her children.
And then she began to realize that was what God felt for her, times infinity. She’d been told her whole life that she was a child of God but she didn’t really appreciate it fully until then and she knew that God would see her through.
So here I was reading this last night and suddenly I felt a connection that had never occurred to me before either. Both the one that the author realizes but also another one, a much more powerful one to me.
There have been many moments in my life when I have worried about my kids. When Zack was born and didn’t cry, wasn’t able to breathe much at all I worried. When the doctor thought he might have cystic fibrosis I worried. When Brycen’s heart rate dropped below mine during labour and I needed an emergency c-section the fear in my heart was overwhelming. When Cameron and Cole were diagnosed with TTTS at 23 weeks gestation and we were told they were not viable if born then and that without surgery there was 100% chance we would lose one and likely both I was beyond concerned, beyond anxious, beyond fearful. When we learned Cole’s heart was very sick, that he was very sick, I was stressed beyond belief and when we learned he had passed away I was devastated. I didn’t think I could be more afraid then I was for Cameron when we went through the treatments for his severe anemia, during the MRI done on his brain or in the days that followed both of these. But I was wrong…I was shattered when my water broke and we were prepared by the medical staff to welcome our very premature, very small for his gestational age and likely very sick son.
And of course the worries didn’t stop there…for any of my kids. I worried about how the time I spent away would affect my older boys, I worried for Cameron’s health. I was concerned for the lack of transition time that Brycen especially had from being the baby to being the big brother. To be honest, that worry is still very much apart of our lives as we watch how he interacts with Cameron (not so well would be the observation). I was very stressed about Cameron’s development…okay I am still worried about this at times. I worry about social interactions with my boys, I worry about how our, crappy at times, parenting will affect them… I think I could go on forever.
A parents worry never goes away. A very good friend, our old minister Theresa, spoke at Cameron's baptism about the worry that parents have when pregnancy doesn’t go as planned and when parenthood doesn’t go as planned. She spoke about turning those worries over to God because sometimes you worry so much that you miss out on what’s happening around you. And she’s so right…I definitely feel that way about the arrival of my twins. I was so full of worry about Cameron’s health and so full of stress concerning Cole’s body condition after 11 lifeless weeks inside of me that I could not appreciate the moment for what it was, could not bring myself to hug, kiss or even touch my precious son.
But this author and her words have made me realize something even more important. For as much as we worry about our children, God worries about us. For as much as we are fearful for the crisis that our children are in, God is fearful for the crisis we are in and what choices it may cause us to make.
For me, it comes back to my heartfelt belief, God does not want horrible things to happen, He does not wish us this pain, this worry, this fear. Our pain hurts Him too. But just as our children learn to lean on us when they are in pain, are afraid or are worried, so must we learn to lean on God when we are put in situations with our children and with other aspects of our life.
We are so truly blessed to have a Father that cares so much for us that He’s willing to endure the most horrible pain so that we won’t have to. All we have to do is lean on him and let him wrap us in His arms the way we wrap our own loved ones in ours.

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