Gratitude is one of those things I don’t think a person can ever get or give enough of. Whether it’s saying “Thank You” to the lady at Starbucks giving you your morning fix or helping your child write a hand written thank you card for a birthday gift – it is always received well. You always make someone feel good about what they’ve done, and you’re always setting a good example for the little eyes watching you. Nobody ever thinks, “Geez would she stop with the thank you’s already!” but they do sometimes think, “I didn’t do this for a thank you, but it would be nice to feel appreciated…”
Manners in general are a very big deal to me, please, thank you, excuse me, pardon me (we DO NOT say What?!) or may I are pre-requisites to being part of this family. Our girls need reminding from time to time (especially Audrey right now) but for the most part they have stellar manners, and it makes us soooo proud! We never worry that they won’t be grateful for a gift or a kind word, and we know that they appreciate that gratitude when it’s returned to them.
Which is why today’s post was so important for me to write. Important to say, and important for you all to hear.
Your support the past few weeks in e-mails, phone calls, comments, Facebooks and Tweets has been incredible. Your prayers were felt in such a real way and for us, all of us the love of our heavenly Father was felt through you.
To say that sitting in the emergency room on Sunday night and hearing that my daughter could potentially be bleeding somewhere internally, was scary is an understatement. I was terrified, the doctor was flipant about it and I had visions of things I can’t even put into words. Things that literally stole my breath.
Being that I’m one of those people who processes things by “talking them through” (I talk it out, I write it out, I hash and re-hash it over and then I talk some more, to anyone who’ll listen. This doesn’t even cover the thinking involved) I Facebooked it.
We needed prayers and support. I wasn’t really expecting much of a response but I needed to get it out somewhere, the response was overwhelming. A message was sent to Corey’s boss asking if Corey could just start later (than 5am) on Monday morning because he was at the hospital so late with me and in minutes his phone rang. Not only did he have the day off, his boss and family (and dear friends of ours) were praying, as were the members of their small group from church.
The days wore on, with no answers, and such a sick baby girl. While her fever came down after a few days, looking in her eyes I could see something was so wrong, I could feel something was so wrong, and I could feel the cold grip of fear tightening around my heart. They were missing something, I knew they were.
It’s such a helpless feeling sitting and watching your baby fight through an illness. Holding them through the poking and proding, needles and IV’s, even when the doctors and nursing staff are stellar (and they were) it’s impossible not to feel frustrated, not to feel annoyed, not to want to kick the lab tech in the nuts and offer your own veins instead.
I was fighting for control, and I was losing. I was crying out to my Jesus, the one who gave this precious little girl to me and the only one who could save her. I knew He was listening but I felt like my answer kept being “Wait”.
I was also blogging, and Facebooking and Tweeting, clinging to each message and comment. Feeling encouraged by those who offered words of comfort, concern and compassion. There were times that while tears threatened to fall, a buzz would come through on my silenced phone that would allow a smile or a feeling of warmth to help soothe the moment.
And all the while I sat with my littlest girl, I worried about my biggest girl. She’s a mommy’s girl and she’s a routine kid. Her life was being disrupted and my heart broke. But again, it was all in His hands. She was with her Grammy and Papa, two of her most favourite people – ever and they were taking wonderful care of her. She smiled inspite of missing us and even though her tiny eyes were so sad, she never once complained. The gratitude we have for my Mom and Dad and what they’ve done is overwhelming. Both Corey and I truly don’t know what we would have done without them. My Mom has stepped up time and time again to be a support for us, whether it’s sitting in Emerg with me while I struggled not to barf on the floor or snuggling my girls so I could shower, she’s been right there. She’s been my Mom, and we love her so very much for it.
As the Thursday that AJ was still in hospital wore on, the ache in my gut got worse. Something was still wrong, she’d perked up some but she was pale, her lips a ghastly colour, her eyes so dull. They were checking her numbers the following morning and talking of sending us home. And I wanted to go home so bad, but in those hours I wanted to stay, I wanted to head for Children’s Hospital, I wanted them to find “it” because my gut was screaming there was something wrong. And I said as much on every social network and online venue I could find. I texted, I researched, I called, I cried and I prayed. I pleaded with God for answers, for peace and for a solution.
And so did you. I felt it.
I didn’t sleep Thursday night almost at all. I stood by her bed watching her breath, I search for answers and I worried. And then sometime in the wee hours of the morning I felt the most overwhelming and earth shattering sense of peace setting in.
It wasn’t that I was just letting things go, it was more than that. I could feel people praying, I could feel something changing and I could feel the Holy Spirit moving. It was a feeling of awe, of comfort, of real peace.
To you that may sound corny, if you don’t believe then it sounds down right crazy, but it wasn’t. It was real and raw and true. In those hours I believe, with every hair on my head He was healing something in her body. He was kick starting her bone marrow and things were looking up! And for that, I want to say thank you! While God know’s our future long before it happens, He also asks us to cry out to Him, for praise and for requests, for ourselves and for others. That night, because you cried out to us, He answered. And I don’t think I could say thank you enough.
One of my favourite songs is, “What if His People Prayed” by the Casting Crowns. It’s moving and touching, and true. And what makes it even more special, is I KNOW what happens when they pray, He answers. (sidenote: Even if we hadn’t gotten the positive answers we did, He would have answered. It just wouldn’t have been the one we wanted. He loves us just the same, and that’s the part that rocks!)
All of that isn’t to say that I didn’t wake up Friday morning with my stomach in knots. I did. I still woke up concerned with the results, worried about what was to come, but instead of fearing that a positive result would be wrong, I knew that whatever they said, I wasn’t in control and that was a good thing. It meant that someone else was watching over her and me, and I was glad.
So, thank you. To those who prayed, to those who sent messages, to those who love us, to those who continue to support us (because we still need the prayers, thoughts and support) and to those who’ve helped along the way.
You truly have no idea, what it has meant and what prayer can do!