A wise friend shared the above encouragement with me last night (it's a marathon, not a sprint). I'm not even sure she knew that I needed to hear it, but I really did. I realize that in every person's life, you experience good days and bad days. Days of joy and days of sadness. Days of energy and days of exhaustion. Days of triumph and days of defeat. Days of trust and days of worry. Days of contentment and days of frustration. And especially in trying situations, the "hard days" find a way to sneak up on you. The well-known "pity party" grabs your attention and attempts to suffocate whatever peace and understanding you have worked so hard to build up and keep. Needless to say, today started out being a "pity party" day. I should have seen it coming. You can only have so many good days, before the bad ones start feeling left out and aggressively try to jump in the front of the line! When that happens, oh my, let the suffocating thoughts begin.....
I have to be honest and say that after talking with one of Ethan's doctors yesterday (see below post for reference), I was kind of discouraged and disappointed that Ethan's miraculous healing wasn't going to happen the way I pictured. I stopped taking things 'one day at a time' at that moment, and started becoming overwhelmed with the long road that is inevitably ahead of us.
My pity party started with the thoughts along the line of things like my husband and I will be going to church separately over the next many months, so that the other one can stay with Ethan (whether in the hospital or at home because we've been advised that he cannot be in large groups of people due to the chemo's affect on his immune system). Not to mention the days/nights during the weeks that we are currently separated from each other as I am at the hospital with Ethan.
The next thought that received an invitation to my party was the thought that a transplant won't be ready for at least 2 months, and then after the transplant we will need to stay in Boston for another 6 weeks while Ethan is in isolation and recovery from the transplant. That thought brought along a guest with him to my party, the fact that 6 weeks in Boston means more separation from my hubby as he will have to commute back and forth from work in Connecticut to Boston on weekends (aside from some vacation time he can use), more waiting, more sadness as Ethan has to be in isolation, more tears of frustration about everything in general, and so on.
You'd think my party would have reached full occupancy after all of that, but you'd be surprised how many "guests" can be crammed into a small space. Without much warning, the various anticipated struggles and thoughts of what awaits our little family over the next many months, kept coming right in the door. See, even now, I bet you were tempted to join my party and you didn't even have to RSVP!
I have no point really, other than to say a bad day was inevitable at some point, and there will be more, I'm sure. I think it was just hard to realize that this trial is not just about my baby being sick with cancer (which is hard enough), but about so many other things as well. It's also a test for me and Adam in areas of patience, emotional self-control, complete faith and trust, learning to have contentment in the small joys, and temporary sacrifice of certain desires. We understand that... but it's difficult to accept sometimes. Today obviously being one of those times.
BUT, trials and lessons like that aren't specific to just us. Many people suffer for a season... and that's what I remembered... this is only for a season. And when I remembered that, I asked all my guests to leave my pity party. It wasn't easy, because they are very forceful and want me to focus all my attention on them. But the Lord helped me shut the door (at least for now) with these words... "My brethren [Kasey and Adam], count it all joy when ye fall into diverse temptations [trials]; knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh [produces] patience. But let patience have her perfect work that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing.... Let him [you] ask in faith, nothing wavering.... " (James 1:2-4 & 6).
Lord, remove the clouds and shadows of today. Thank you, that though I am weak, You are strong. Than you that you already have all of the details of the near future worked out for us and that Your surprises are never-ceasing. Help me to just step back and let you execute everything in the best of ways. Thank you that Your love will not let us go....