Confronted with death (pt.1)

Over the course of the last year and a half there have been so many times I have wanted to share something, but due to the rapid pace of life and the sheer weight of it all, I haven’t. People write books about parenting adoptive children from trauma… and there’s a good reason why. Many people close to our hearts have passed away: family and friends. We’ve moved. Remodeled. Run businesses. We’ve run through testing, and jumped through hoops, with infertility. We’ve also dealt with deep challenges that aren’t even worth giving energy to at the moment. And in the midst of it all, we’ve forced ourselves to stay connected in a time when all we want is to curl up on our bed and hibernate. Most people have no clue what we’ve walked through because we don’t blast it all over social. We just don’t roll like that. But this… this challenge… was unlike any that I had experienced up until this point.

On July 2nd, I received a call from my dad that my mom had an accident. “She fell off a step stool. She’s in a lot of pain. Please pray for her.”

“Okay. I will.” I said.

Falls can be painful. I get it. I’ve taken a few.

A few minutes later I received another call. “Mom can’t get up. She can’t move her legs. An ambulance is coming.”

Concerned. I waited.

Thirty minutes later, another call. “They’re taking her to a bigger hospital… it’s not what they think.”

My sister and I booked a flight to Indiana for the next day. I canceled work and waited. Anxiety grew within me.

Dad called back. “They discovered mom had an aneurysm. The doctors are running tests.”

“Is she okay?” I asked.

“We don’t know yet.” my dad said. “She had a stroke too. She’s hemorrhaged. There is blood and water on her brain. They need to operate. It’s risky. If they don’t, she’ll probably die. If they do, she might die. It’ll be five hours before we know anything.”

A text from a doctor cousin… “You better get up there as soon as possible if you want to see her alive.”

My head spun and I felt numb. I walked around my room in a panic, not going anywhere. I knew that I needed to do something, but what?

Pack.

Shaking, I knew what I needed.

Funeral clothes.

clocks

{I’ll be sharing our story through different posts. More craziness to come.}

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Letting go

A message to myself:

Even if there’s something better out there… It’s hard to let go of what’s in my hand for the unknown.

As I clutch, with white knuckles to what is good enough, I keep my eyes on what is best. I just can’t let it out of my sight. I long for it… I dream about it… Though my inability to let go of good enough feeds my growing discontentment like fertilizer.

I don’t know what you believe… but I believe that you can speak to the living God – and that God speaks back. Not in a crazy way… in a sane way. In a way that really transforms my life.

So, when I pray and ask God for insight and wisdom, I believe (100%) that He gives me those things. He promises that.

I’ve been seeking wisdom regarding a transition for years. (Just ask anyone close to me, I’m sure they’re tired of hearing about it.) So finally, I felt like I knew what I needed to do. It was clear. More than clear actually – uncomfortably clear – the kind of clarity that has to do with obedience. When clarity mixes with obedience, that’s some serious stuff. Seriously good. But serious none the less.

So, that’s where I am… struggling to obey.

Like God has never proven Himself faithful, good, or loving beyond comprehension. So, why can’t I let go of a mediocre dream for something greater? Can I not see that it actually is greater than what’s in my hands? Is it because I know that the next step will be hard? Is it just too risky?

So, I’m at a crossroad… I’m either going to believe that where He leads me is best – or I’m not.

If I can just wrap my mind, a little bit more, around how much God loves me… I would be less fearful, less intimidated and more willing to let go of the known for the unknown… Because if He really does love me, then He is trustworthy – without hesitation.

Sometimes I wonder if I jump, will he be there to catch me? Or, what if I leave what is certain -and obey- and then it all collapses in on itself…. and I end up out on the street – begging for food – without my tweezers (possibly the worst case scenario)… Okay… I know, a bit over the top… But sometimes, before I even get to taking the step of faith, deciding to turn in the direction of obedience is more difficult than anything.

The unknown that I turn toward might fall apart. Then again, the certainty of today might be pulled from underneath me. If I do everything right, things could still end up in a hot mess.

You see the thing is (and excuse me as I tell myself this for the eighteen millionth time)… It’s not up to me to make it right and beautiful and successful. Success doesn’t hinge on my perseverance, intellect or smooth skills (whatever those might be) alone.

What I am responsible for is loving people and loving God. It’s not complicated really (though I tend to over complicate everything). It’s simple… Today, am I being obedient to what God is leading me to do?

Am I willing to let go of my expectations, fears and disappointments and turn toward Him {and trust} in His love? His love that sacrificed, and gave and risked it all… And continues to give so that I might continue to scratch the surface of how deep and how wide and how high is His love.

If I can allow myself to get lost in His great love, then I can more fully see who He really is… In seeing who God really is, you can’t help but fall more in love with Him. Then, all I will want to do is turn and run in the direction that He is calling me.

If you would like to know more about what talking to God looks like – or want to ask any questions about His love for you, email me. We can walk through it together.