At the end of last week Matt asked if I wanted to do the post this week…I said no. Then I thought about it and said no again. The 2nd no was followed by him telling me he decided it wasn’t a question anymore; he wanted me to do it. He doesn’t ask much of me, so here I am, completely out of my comfort zone. To those of you that look forward to the eloquence of Matt’s words each week, I apologize…know that I, too, am disappointed.
This past week has been good. Not a lot is different…Alabama won, Arkansas lost…you know, the usual. There have been 7 more birthdays, 7 more days of rejoicing & celebrating & enjoying every second, 7 more days of visitors and blessings. Eliot’s biggest struggle is going to the bathroom and we have been figuring out the best way to help and there has been some progress. There’s no way to describe daily life and even those who have had the chance to visit don’t actually experience it. There are times when I look at all going on and think how did I get here? Wasn’t I just in college…wasn’t I just walking down the aisle…and now I am a mom? What happened? Then there are other times where it is the most comfortable and natural thing- as if God has made every part of my life up until now only a step in leading me to this- and as if I have always not only been intended to be a mom but to be Eliot’s mom.
A friend gave us a short story this week printed on a piece of card stock about what it’s like to have a special needs kid. Essentially, it said it’s like preparing to go on a trip to Italy, learning all about Italy and hearing what Italy is like from all your friends who have been there, packing for Italy and getting on a plane to Italy. Then when you land, you realize the plane has actually landed in Holland…at first you are just surprised to be in Holland because you knew so much about Italy and not Holland, but from the second you step off the plane, Holland is not only incredible but better than Italy…and Holland actually becomes home.
When we had the ultrasound at 30 weeks that showed many markers of trisomy18, one of those seen was clenched fists. Between the Tuesday of my amniocentesis and the Friday of the results, I have vivid memories of my pleading to the Lord to “unclench the fists”. It’s funny how small our minds are and how BIG God and His plan is. I can’t put into words how grateful I am that the Lord did not unclench those fists. I love Eliot’s clenched fists…I love our “Holland”…I love everything about Holland…I love changing Eliot’s oxygen…I love that his food goes into syringes and into a pump and through a tube…I love his webbed toes…I love his whole right ear and his partial left ear…I love that the greatest accomplishment of my life is dropping a tube down his throat at 3 am…I love getting to see Matt be the best dad a kid could ever have…I love that so many unknowns have turned into 47 days of knowing every expression and cry and squirm and punching of the clenched fists. Though I am very aware that the unknowns continue, I am also very aware of the fullness and joy of today. God’s goodness is not always packaged as we think; it’s better than anything we could ever come up with.