Recently at the hospital, I was on the receiving end of some words that were not meant to sting, but in fact created more swelling than the speakers ever realized.
The last two days, Levi has struggled with some reflux and digestion issues. Since eating has always been part of his positive remarks, I was of course disappointed. Moreover, it may be the culprit of his most recent episodes. In fact I've not been able to really hold him because he's had those episodes right in my arms. Last night, Levi's numbers began to come down as I rested him against me, and he very quickly turned a blue-grey color and both his oxygen and heart-rate dropped dramatically. As several nurses came to the rescue to stimulate and help him recover, one sweet nurse said, "when their eyes glaze over and roll up like that, I swear they are looking at their guardian angels saying, 'I'm not ready yet'." While I'm sure this was intended to give me hope that he is constantly watched over (and I do believe in angels), it had the exact opposite effect. I never, ever imagined that each time Levi struggled, he was facing his death... I almost lost it completely.
When I solemnly got to my car and gave my usual parking pass to the attendant, she looked at it and exclaimed, "You renewed it again. Your baby is still here!?!" I just wanted to shout at her, "YES, AND THANK YOU FOR REMINDING ME!"
I know that neither of these women had ill intentions, but it just goes to show the amount of grace we have to give one another because we are all in different states of life, and we don't know how our words affect each other. Without grace, we'd all walk wounded, hating everyone and everything.
But words can also be unbelievably healing. I've been on the receiving end of some of the sweetest and most encouraging words I've ever heard. Thanks to each of you reading this, I am constantly reminded of the goodness in the world. As hard as it is to watch my little boy suffer, I know that I am not the only one having to watch someone I love hurt.
Whether it's a child making decisions that break your heart piece by piece, a spouse who's chosen a road that you believe will break your marriage in half, a parent who you feel like you are having to parent yourself, or some other relationship that involves you having to stand by and helplessly watch someone you love experience pain that you wished you could erase, we all experience suffering in our own way and in our own time. It truly gives the foundation of my faith purpose. Why would anyone want to watch their supposed savior and king suffer on a cross the way that Jesus' followers did? Because He knew we'd all suffer one day, and we needed a way out. I'm thankful that their is purpose in our pain.
As I drove home today from yet another disappointing visit with Levi, I remembered that I have prayed many times to never be "comfortable or stagnate in my life." I've found that when things are easy, and I get too comfortable, I lose the ability to really hear God's voice.
But today I heard him loud and clear: "You are still going to this hospital because I still have people for you to meet. You don't know the people that will come across your path, but it's not always for you to know. Trust me. Lean on me. I'll carry you when you get tired because I love you, and I love Levi more than you could ever know."
So no matter what season you are in, rest assured that you are where you are for a reason. Don't rush it; don't waste it; and don't think that it's always about you. Choose to trust. Choose to love even when the world doesn't.
Thank you for those of you who prayed! Levi's eyes looked good again, and Matthew was able to hold and comfort him that day before the test. However, he'll still get another eye exam in another two weeks to check the maturity and progress.
God bless you!