Let them be little

Let them be little



I often think about perspective, and how circumstances play a MAJOR part in perspectives. 

I read over Annabelle's story the other day, and it brought me right back to the feelings I had while she was being taken care of my nurses, and not me.  Then, I realized that because of what we went through the first week of her life, my perspective towards parenting has been different than what I expected it to be.  The first week of her life set a tone for the last two years.

 (She looks so helpless. Hard to believe it's the same girl)

While she was in the care of nurses, I envied them.  My heart ached that I could not take care of her, and spend the night with her.  I simply just wanted to even be the one to change her diapers.  Something so simple, that possibly other moms who "Go to Italy" take for granted.  I felt so guilty for not changing her diapers, when really things like that were out of our control.  There were moments in the NICU that were kind of like scheduled "care" times.  Where Craig and I were able to be there at just the right time, to change her, take her temperature, and put clothes on her.  Something so simple was so exciting for us.  Kinda funny to think back on that.

(Daddy getting her all dressed to go HOME)

It's kinda funny because I am still pretty jealous for her.  I like being her caretaker.  There have been so many times in the last two years that people have asked me what they can do to help, and sometimes, I want to be the one still to change her, or feed her or put her to bed.  Don't get me wrong, the nights where we have babysitters or I have someone helping with those simple things are nights and moments that i LOVE and cherish.  But, there is still a tiny bit of jealousy, and I miss her.  

(This picture makes me feel peace.  I remember the overwhelming sense of joy and peace I had to have her home and in my own arms)

I think I have had that first week on my mind a lot lately because of how SO CLOSE the time is to our first week with a son.  I asked God the other day to allow me to "go to Italy" this time around.  As thankful as I am that I was able to experience the heartache and tough times following Annabelle's birth, I still have that desire to have my baby, and everything be "normal". Whatever normal is.  I have prayed and prayed for the health of this little boy, and as the time nears for his arrival, I am even more on my knees.  I have an idea of how I want the whole day to go, and the days that follow to go.  But, as I think about the differences that his birth and Annabelle's birth will most likely have, I pray that I am still just as jealous to be his momma as I was for Annabelle.  I want my perspective towards parenting each of my children to be about the same, in that sense.   Does that make any sense?  

Anyways, I am getting anxious and excited for this time of life.  To have another baby to hold and love and get to know.  It's the craziest kind of love I have ever experienced, and I look forward to whatever God has in store for us. 


Emily Perl Kingsley.
c1987 by Emily Perl Kingsley. All rights reserved
I am often asked to describe the experience of raising a child with a disability - to try to help people who have not shared that unique experience to understand it, to imagine how it would feel. It's like this......
When you're going to have a baby, it's like planning a fabulous vacation trip - to Italy. You buy a bunch of guide books and make your wonderful plans. The Coliseum. The Michelangelo David. The gondolas in Venice. You may learn some handy phrases in Italian. It's all very exciting.
After months of eager anticipation, the day finally arrives. You pack your bags and off you go. Several hours later, the plane lands. The stewardess comes in and says, "Welcome to Holland."
"Holland?!?" you say. "What do you mean Holland?? I signed up for Italy! I'm supposed to be in Italy. All my life I've dreamed of going to Italy."
But there's been a change in the flight plan. They've landed in Holland and there you must stay.
The important thing is that they haven't taken you to a horrible, disgusting, filthy place, full of pestilence, famine and disease. It's just a different place.
So you must go out and buy new guide books. And you must learn a whole new language. And you will meet a whole new group of people you would never have met.
It's just a different place. It's slower-paced than Italy, less flashy than Italy. But after you've been there for a while and you catch your breath, you look around.... and you begin to notice that Holland has windmills....and Holland has tulips. Holland even has Rembrandts.
But everyone you know is busy coming and going from Italy... and they're all bragging about what a wonderful time they had there. And for the rest of your life, you will say "Yes, that's where I was supposed to go. That's what I had planned."
And the pain of that will never, ever, ever, ever go away... because the loss of that dream is a very very significant loss.
But... if you spend your life mourning the fact that you didn't get to Italy, you may never be free to enjoy the very special, the very lovely things ... about Holland.

I was lucky enough to go to Holland, and would never ever ever change that experience for anything in the world.  ;)

1 comment:

  1. That's a great metaphor... :) can't wait to meet my nephew! and i can't wait to see pictures of Annabelle holding him!