Thursday, April 20, 2017

Happy Birthday, Leah

April 20th has become a day that I anticipate with dread and excitement. It’s a strange feeling to both love and hate a day, especially the day of your child’s birth. I mean, it’s a day; not a person who was mean to me and hurt my feelings, or a friend who did something really thoughtful and made my day. One day out of 365 in a year, and yet… this day has such significance in my life that I can almost feel it coming. It should have been a day that was filled with joy and wonderment, and it was, but it’s also a day of grief and pain. As we celebrate another year of Leah’s presence, accomplishments, and happiness, we grieve another year of milestones not reached, goals not met, and dreams that haven't come true. It’s hard not to think about what an 8 year old should be doing and compare that to Leah.  It’s hard not to be overcome with emotion. It’s hard to watch your child struggle with every day life things. It’s hard to not be planning a party for a child who doesn’t have friends, doesn’t care about parties or presents, and doesn’t like to eat cake. It’s hard to explain to your other children why we are not having a birthday party for Leah, but why we celebrate her anyway. It’s hard to admit that being Leah’s mom makes me sad sometimes.  Some days it is easier to be the mother of a child with significant disabilities, but today is not one of them. It is not easy, but today I choose thankfulness. Today, I am thankful for three healthy children. Today, I am thankful for grandparents to be with us to celebrate and pick up the ice cream that Leah will eat. Today, I am thankful for friends and family who sit with me in my grief, who pray with me and for me, and who direct my gaze back up. Today, I am thankful for my eternal hope, one day everything will be perfect. Today, I am thankful for a Savior who also grieved, and who will one day wipe away all tears. Today, I am thankful for a Sovereign God, who shows me that He is providentially at work in our lives, for our good and His glory. Today, I am thankful for Leah, my child, made in the image of God, one of His prized possessions, my girl, whom I love more than my own life. Happy 8th Birthday, Leah.

Happy BIRTHday, Leah!

Happy 8th Birthday, Leah!