By Dawn Graczyk, Sunshine Mom
My faith has sustained me, but has it guided me? I’d like to think so.
There are many times faith is hard fought for me: a struggle, a conscious CHOICE to believe that God is good and loving and has a beautiful plan. Other days, quite honestly, I wish I could walk away. On those days it would be easier to believe this was all a cosmic accident: a chance combination of DNA with no purpose, no one to blame, no one who could intercede but chooses not to do so.
It feels as though God has given me a stone, or rather, a bag filled with stones. I am the modern Sisyphus, rolling the stone up the hill toward normalcy, only to roll back down into another hospital stay, crushed by a boulder of more bills. A messy house. More fear. I am Jack with the treasure in my hand, under the boot of the giant, waiting to be crushed. Time is a heavy weight.
Yes, I’ve told God I’m done. I’ve told him I’m angry, and I don’t want anything to do with faith anymore. And yet, He waits for me, and His arms remain open. He sees my heart, feels my hurt and allows me to question and rage and insist that I can’t be faithful any longer. BUT GOD. Those two words are throughout the Bible. BUT GOD will not let me go. He says, “They are MINE, and no man will pluck them out of my hand.” John 10:28.
I Don’t Want a Story
I cannot stop time. I cannot change the course of this horrid, thieving disease. But I can embrace time, and perhaps, even sorrow. Books that move us the most and the movies we watch again and again are those that stir our souls deeply BECAUSE of love that shines through pain, adversity, and sorrow.
If you are a parent on this journey with me, make no mistake: I am not painting a rainbow around your hurt and telling you to carpe diem and jump with joy. Not at all. I’m telling you that life continues; time goes on; and you must ride its waves or you will drown.
I have screamed, “I don’t want a testimony if this is what it takes! I don’t want a story! Let me be anonymous and unfeeling!” But without sorrow, we have no stories to lift us higher. The house CAN wait. I know it feels as though it can’t, but it can. The bills, my goodness, they will always be there. Go to the zoo NOW. Walk in the sun NOW. Take that trip; go skydiving; let your kids jump on a trampoline without a net (it was only $50 dollars after all). Wounds can be healed but time can not be regained. So GO.
This is NUTS. And that’s why it makes sense
A couple of years is gone in a blink. Every parent knows this. In my case, it has gripped my heart like a vice. I think of all the places we haven’t seen, and all the things I said we would do “later” when there was more time, more money. When things “calmed down a bit.” They never do, do they? Much like having children, if you wait for the perfect time, it will never come.
Going: Embracing the Time We Have Left
Yesterday morning an idea popped in my head. GO. You have friends all over the US. Ask for help with lodging and GO. I spoke with the doctor to be certain I wasn’t completely endangering my kids. I mean, I let them roam the woods and light bonfires and jump on the trampoline without a net ($50!), but I’m not entirely irresponsible.
It went something like this: “I’m taking a couple kids and heading up the East Coast and possibly across the nation to the West Coast. I think I can hop from one military base to the next or stay with friends. I just want to make sure you think this is not completely unsafe.”
He replied, “Please don’t tell the kids anything. Can we talk about this?”
Later, we talk on the phone. The doctor says, “This is NUTS. This is complete craziness! Where will you stay? Can you afford it? You have two kids with FA and one needs medical equipment. What if someone gets sick?”
I replied, “I’m not entirely sure. But we can’t waste time. If we go to the ER, then I’ll call you from the ER so you can tell the doctors that I’m not crazy and my kids do need special care.”
I added, “It won’t get easier. We won’t get better whether we are here or on the road. I can’t go back later for memories.”
Laughter on the other end. “Go. I can talk to a hospital,” He said. “You are the nuttiest person. This is INSANE! Send me postcards.”
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