Friday, June 1, 2012

What if?

I usually do not let myself go to this place, but today it happened. I was listening to the radio and an old song came on, ”He's my son” by Mark Schultz. (heres the link if you haven't heard it)

Sometimes I will just have a moment of...  I wonder what Samuel would be like running around? Or, I wish he could play with Micah and they could have fun together like normal brothers. Or, I wish he could wrap his arms around my neck and say I love you Mommy.  He does tell me in the way he looks at me and puckers his lips to send a kiss to me.
I was sitting by him holding his hand today and I saw a moment of the big boy he is becoming and I wondered what he would look like as a bigger boy, teenager and man? His face is so handsome and his hair is so beautiful. His toes are identical to his Daddy's, long and skinny. He also got his curls from Tim, I wonder if he would look like him? Sometimes it is painful to be around boys his age, because my mind wanders there. But he is constantly pleasant and content and teaching us that we should all be content. God never said life would be easy, He gave us these trials to make us cling to Him and know our own weakness. Samuel has taught so many people so much, even though he cannot speak a word. Did you know how smart he is? We used to play games all of the time where we would ask him quotations like... which one do we drive in? And show him picture choices and every time he would get them right! That is a simple thing, but he can pick words,etc. sometimes. He just needs the tools to tell us... This is what years at Pediatric Therapy Works (with his amazing therapists) has taught me. :-)  Now that his condition has progressed he doesn't always have the energy or isn't alert enough to answer.  We have always said he is stuck in this body. But he still finds joy and contentment and isn't constantly crying, etc.
I have some wonderful friends who also have children who have special needs. I am so thankful for their friendship and support.  I was introduced to this essay back when Samuel was a baby through Family Connections. It is so neat how it sums up that things are not what we expected, but over time we come to accept it and enjoy it.


by Emily Perl Kingsley.

c1987 by Emily Perl Kingsley. All rights reserved

I am often asked to describe the experience of raising a child with a disability - to try to help people who have not shared that unique experience to understand it, to imagine how it would feel. It's like this......

When you're going to have a baby, it's like planning a fabulous vacation trip - to Italy. You buy a bunch of guide books and make your wonderful plans. The Coliseum. The Michelangelo David. The gondolas in Venice. You may learn some handy phrases in Italian. It's all very exciting.

After months of eager anticipation, the day finally arrives. You pack your bags and off you go. Several hours later,the plane lands. The stewardess comes in and says, "Welcome to Holland."

"Holland?!?" you say. "What do you mean Holland?? I signed up for Italy! I'm supposed to be in Italy. All my life I've dreamed of going to Italy."

But there's been a change in the flight plan. They've landed in Holland and there you must stay.

The important thing is that they haven't taken you to a horrible, disgusting, filthy place, full of pestilence, famine and disease. It's just a different place.

So you must go out and buy new guide books. And you must learn a whole new language. And you will meet a whole new group of people you would never have met.

It's just a different place. It's slower-paced than Italy, less flashy than Italy. But after you've been there for a while and you catch your breath, you look around.... and you begin to notice that Holland has windmills....and Holland has tulips. Holland even has Rembrandts.

But everyone you know is busy coming and going from Italy... and they're all bragging about what a wonderful time they had there. And for the rest of your life, you will say "Yes, that's where I was supposed to go. That's what I had planned."

And the pain of that will never, ever, ever, ever go away... because the loss of that dream is a very very significant loss.

But... if you spend your life mourning the fact that you didn't get to Italy, you may never be free to enjoy the very special, the very lovely things ... about Holland.

I am thankful for my sweet son and even though I have ”what if” moments, I am thankful to enjoy things in a special way. Thank you Lord, that Your plans are better than mine.


Bebe said...

I had my own "what if" day all day yesterday. I think those moments are okay and give us a glimpse of what heaven will be like. I can't wait to see Samuel, Zach and Caleb all playing together someday! I am learning the balance of being happy for other people while feeling sad we aren't getting to have the same experience. Love you dear friend. Thanks for sharing your heart!

Mary Elisabeth said...

I am going through Bebe withdrawl, by the way... Miss you this week! Love you!

Jeff said...

Even now, as Macayla is in heaven, we still have "what if" moments. I applaud you for not only being transparent about the "what if" moments, but also for not losing sight of "what is." What a blessing Samuel is and what a blessing your family is!

Alisa said...

Your wisdom and vulnerability are beautiful. Love you.

Kelly said...

Thank you for this perspective this morning. I have been praying for you family!
-Kelly Hall

Melly said...

I had a "what if" moment about Samuel Thurs as I watched Knox and Jake play football on the playground. I love you sweet sister. Thank you for sharing your heart, you know it is in mine as well.

sherrisettle said...

Amazing....thanks for always sharing your heart...and for the way you have shared Samuel with all of us. I even had my own "what if" Samuel moment yesterday...envisioning a miraculous healing and picturing him running around with all of have all taught us so much through your precious testimony and incredible faith, love, peace, etc. We will continue to pray for all of you.... we love you all.