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Sunday, August 26, 2007

From Bad to Glad

Friday was a rough day. I wanted to blog about it, but time didn't permit, and sometimes I worry about writing to the world when I feel so very sad. I lose perspective quite easily, and if you don't know me well, you'd think that I should be making an appointment with a psychiatrist ASAP.

As I expected, a good night's sleep, a glass of Bailey's, and breakfast with two of my sweetest girlfriends have since helped put things back into perspective.

What spurred on my glum was a comment made by a precious friend of mine. I love her, and know that her intentions are pure, but it stung nonetheless. She was complaining that her 13-month-old was off-the-charts heavy (about the same weight as Ellie is now, at 2-and-a-half), and since he hasn't started walking yet, she still had to carry him around everywhere.

It made me want to SCREAM !

My head started spinning with questions:

Why would you gripe about something like that? Don't you know I would give my life for the knowledge that I only had another couple of months of carrying Ellie around, before she'd be walking, then running, then jumping? Don't you realize that I'll be lugging my baby around for perhaps a lifetime?

That was Friday. Today is Sunday, and rationality has taken over. I've still thought about that comment a lot, not so much about the exact words, but about my reaction to the remark. Deep down, I know that I would have been the one complaining, had circumstances been different, and Ellie's life been "normal". I wouldn't have thought twice about griping over Ellie's unfortunately pronounced cowlick, or her seasonal recurring eczema. It wouldn't have crossed my mind that these COMPLETELY IRRELEVANT AND SMALL PROBLEMS weren't worthy of breath or thought. I don't even know that I would have thanked God that my baby's issues were so very trivial.

So, perhaps this is just another way in which Ellie has blessed me. And changed me. She has made me sensitive in so many ways. I have learned (or, more accurately, am still learning) how to choose my words carefully and respectfully. I have been taught how to cry from the deepest depths of my heart. I have been trained to see people differently. I now know how to be thankful. Truly, unabashedly, 100 percent, fall down on my knees with my face buried in the floor because God's warm light is blinding THANKFUL.

I am involved in an on-line support group for moms with children diagnosed with cerebral palsy. I know that many of them would give everything in order for their child to be as mildly affected as Ellie. For me to complain about Ellie bee-line crawling to the lamp electrical cords, or how annoying her constant "Mommy's!" are would be complete blasphemy to these mothers. Just as I would give my life to know that my butt-lugging days would come to an end in a couple months, they would give their lives to hear their child say "Mommy" once in his/her lifetime.

It's all about perspective. Ellie has taught me so much about that.

So, my lesson from Friday, my very bad day, is that I need to be more mindful of what I say, and I most definitely need to be consumed with gratitude for what God has GIVEN, not taken. I can be filled with despair if I think of how part of Ellie's brain was taken from her....OR...I can be filled with thankfulness by God's grace in allowing Ellie to LIVE, to BREATHE, to TALK, to THINK, to BE.

Today, I choose to be thankful.


Jonathan, Andrea and Luke said...

Dearest blog friend..
I got your most amazing and sweet message. I immediately clicked on your blog so that I could get a glimpse of your little one and your world. Wow. I'm in awe.
I can't believe you know Martha. She is utterly amazing. I will so show her your baby girl if that's ok? I know she would be so glad to see her and your family update.
I wanted to say that I know the pain of not knowing, not understand and the diagnosis whether it's good or bad. I so get you. Please know I do. Your exactly right...SN mom's are indeed seriously connected. There are too few of us and when we spot each's hard to let go.
I thank you so much for blog lurking and praying for my sweet boy. I am so humbled by the outpour from strangers...more than day to day friends/relatives.
Only God can whew prayer like that.
I will pray in faith for your sweet girl. Please know....I so will. Also, I just have to say this. I know that God's prognosis will's healing and that man's diagnosis seems bleek. But, someday will look many women in the eye and profoundly minister to them "The Lord's way". Not give just the 'pat' Christian answers...Like "all you gotta do is surrender your child to God"...crap like that. I say that boldly because most whom offer this advice have not a clue in 'heaven and hell' of what that truly means. You my friend...will embrace this and at the end your faith will be that of a HUGE ROCK. 'upon this rock..I will build my church'.
You will touch people so deeply and be able to say "You are not alone". I thank you dear sweet blog friend. May God richly bless you and I'll check on you often.
Andrea Hughes---Mom to Luke

Jonathan, Andrea and Luke said...

Hey Chrystie

I showed Martha your blog today!! She was beyond elated to see your sweet daughter and her growth. We tried to find a pic of you...but could not! LOL
She asked if I could send her your link via email.'ll be blog stalked by Martha. She was so humbled by your sweet message.
Just wanted to send hugs your way,