When our two year old was first diagnosed with severe congenital heart disease, I was shaken to the core. Everything that I had once taken for granted suddenly became transient. I changed from thinking that I had things under control. I learned how wildly out of my control everything really is.
When Jack was diagnosed with his second and most lethal heart disease I became seized with the fear of ever having another child. The idea of going through all of the pain we had experienced snuffed my dreams of having a big family and replaced them with a boat load of fear. Many of you know that life with a special needs child comes with so much stress and difficulties that the very idea of throwing another child into the mix seems depressing. Raising children ain’t no joke. Add a critical disease to the mix and suddenly you have constant doctors appointments, hospitizations, debt, fear … Fear.
When I found out that I was pregnant it was crushing and terrifying. It wasn’t the news I wanted. How in the world can we fit a new baby into our already upside down world?
Have you ever gotten a Christmas present that you never knew you wanted but it turned out to be the best thing ever? Some time ago my husband, who had a really bad track record for gift giving, got me a birthday present. I braced myself for another bizarre gift I would have to pretend to like when I suddenly unveiled a thing I never knew I desperately wanted. An electric blanket. I am always cold, always. My husband knew that and went out and bought me a big ol electric blanket. I was so excited! Best. Gift. Ever. The best think was that he knew what I wanted better then I did. That made me feel loved and known.
Now I sit here with a tiny new baby sleeping serenely beside me. I didn’t know I wanted to have another child so badly until God gave him to me. I couldn’t have known how much joy this new life could bring to my broken heart until I held my fourth son in my arms for the first time. God gave me a gift he knew that I needed. I now have four incredible and unique boys all so very different from one another. My family is complete and that fear I was nursing of accepting another life into the family and potentially going through the same pain we have endured with baby Jack has vanished.
God is the father who knows how to give perfect gifts and the mother who holds my hand and quiets my soul.
“But I have calmed and quieted my soul like a weaned child with its mother; like a weaned child is my soul within me.” Psalm 131:2