I gave Abigail her new doll blanket today - she's pretty thrilled as you can see. I knit it with the left over yarn from Rachel's blanket. Tonight Dave and I were reminiscing about what Ethan and Abigail were like as babies. I looked back in their baby books and found out that Abigail also had lots of dark hair, like Rachel. I had forgotten that! What a thrill it was to take home our babies - healthy as far as we knew - and to embark on that new journey of parenthood. Yes, the nights were rough (who are we kidding - Ethan was a little terror - I think I banged his head on the door frames alot that first month, stumbling around in the dark trying to get him to just STOP crying...) oh- I should mention that I didn't bang his head on purpose. .. But even then, we didn't really mind the lack of sleep. Because we were madly in love.
It is hard not to compare them with Rachel. By this time our older two were more than twice her weight. We feel thankful (and relieved) that we could experience having healthy babies - we know not everyone can. So much pain in the world - Today I heard of how a 3 year old boy fell into the gap between the c-train and the train platform and died. He was running along the track with his Grandfather. His Grandfather needed an interpreter so I assume He didn't speak English. My heart can barely stand the senselessness of that - the horror. A few days ago, I also heard of a young boy badly injured in a quad accident, a nephew of someone in our church. Oh God...Where are you??!!!
Steven Curtis Chapman, whose daughter died in a tragic accident, sings "Jesus will meet you there." I know that others have said the same. I want to believe this. I want to know that you, God WILL be there. I say that I trust you.....But just in case, I will hold a little tighter to my two healthy children. I scheme - maybe we should risk going through another pregnancy because what if Ethan or Abigail die too? (of course not now, but later on down the road) I start to think of all the ways that I can protect them better. But I can't make a healthy baby grow in me any more than I can change the weather and I can't hover around my children forever. (and it's probably not a good idea to try)
As I was reminiscing today, I came across something I shared on Mother's Day in church shortly after Ethan's birth. Then too, I was struggling with these questions, "Can I really trust God with my children? Does He really have their best at heart, as He says He does?" This is some of what I shared...
"Who is this little person named Ethan? What will his story be? One thing that is already clear is that it will include some suffering and some pain. Right from the time I heard Ethan's first strong angry cry, I realized that I can not protect him from pain. First there is birth itself, then immunizations, gas pains, cold germs. Even our own home was not a safe place when the renters downstairs started smoking pot. As a mother, this fact is hard to come to grips with. My child will experience pain in this world. Of course I know that the things I mentioned are only minor. But I will need to choose now to trust my Father's designs in his life as greater pains come. Because sometimes suffering will be necessary. And because he is mine but he is also not mine. (and He loves Ethan evan more than I can possibly love him myself)
Ethan, someone once said, "In this world, you will have trouble but I have overcome the world." And I hope that you will come to love and trust this person. And that you will look on him with the delight and adoration that you give me now. Ethan, your story will include suffering but there will also be much beauty. I hope that God gives you a wild imagination* and eyes to see the unseen. You are loved and you are wanted. I am so thrilled that I have the priviledge of being your mother."
Ethan, Abigail, and Rachel - for as many days as I am given with each of you - it is a great priviledge and blessing to be your mother. God, help me to daily surrender them into your Wise care. Use the difficulties in their life to produce good character in them - and to remind them of their need for you. Don't waste suffering in their lives - work good from it - so that they will know that You are God. There will be times when they will doubt your love for them - things will happen that won't make sense - but you are Good and you are faithful and you really do have our best at heart. oh, but it is so hard to see that on this side of heaven. Help us believe.
*i think this prayer was answered - he definetly has a wild imagination!!