Then God gave me Micah. And let me just say that my terror was experienced in a few different ways. We all struggled quite a bit before we knew something was wrong. There were days (I hate to admit) when all he could do was take take take from my already depleted self and I would question whether or not I should've become a mom...that all of this was a mistake. I would get so frustrated with moms who talked about wanting to adopt a child with special needs...why would anyone ask for this?! I didn't ask for it..surely. And of course there was the lingering question...what does it say about me that they would want a child with special needs and I don't? Do they think it is easy? Is something wrong with me?
Ouch...it hurts to actually put that out there.
You've probably heard me say that this past year has been the toughest of our lives so far. My husband has also written a little about it here. Over the past few months, our family was given some time away from our normal life. We've used that time to be together, to process pain, to commune with friends, and most of all to know God better. We needed healing. I needed healing. So, I embarked on this time expecting God to come through just as he always has. You see, knowing God and becoming like Jesus doesn't take away tragedy, conflict, depression or any other kind of pain. In some ways the pain can feel worse at times. No, knowing and experiencing God gives us a place to go when you're in the pit. Yes, he was there while I was sinking. I know it...I felt him...he sustained me. I knew that he was allowing each blow so that he could press deeper into me and do something new. If he hadn't been there, I know I would've fallen even lower. Then he gently called me out of each situation...and he said..."know yourself so that you can know me". (This is something beautiful that comes from a counseling relationship with another believer). As I processed each situation and the bigger picture, I continued to see glimpses of his plan. In the process he asked me to humble myself and do some difficult things. But, he was there...he's here.
I feel like I've come to a clearing...a place of refreshment after the long, tangled, and bumpy journey out of the pit. It doesn't mean that there won't be another one up ahead, but I'm being made new...constantly. And right now I am experiencing that newness again. I have joy, I have love. I feel healed in those deep dark places. Bits of pain surface, but I'm definitely in a different place than I was.
So lets bring this back around to Micah and my terror. In my healing, God has changed my heart of fear and expectation...of trying to make my son into something that he wasn't designed to be. He called me to confess my judgement of others and forgive myself for the ways in which I feel like I fail my son (and daughter) on a daily basis. He's helping me to see that my capacity for pain increases my capacity for growth. When we take our pain to the Lord with humility and truly seek to understand Him in our situations, he increases our capacity for wisdom, love, joy, peace, patience, kindness etc. That fruit has never tasted quite so good.
When I see Micah, my heart almost bursts. He has changed me...and taught me things that I would not have learned without him. I am overjoyed to be his mom. Even during the tantrums...I just see him differently. I love him more than I ever have. I am so incredibly thankful for him and I cannot wait to see him develop his own relationship with God. I'm okay with his needs and while I don't want him to suffer, I can't wait to see how his understanding and search for God will increase his own fruit. His four year old little self is already so compassionate and caring. Perhaps those tantrums just show how much he really does care about things. Thank you God for the treasure that I have in Micah and Hannah. Help me to steward them well.
Until the next time :-), C