Monday, December 20, 2010

It just is what it is...

...or maybe a more appropriate title would be Musings on Why I Had a Breakdown in the Target Parking Lot.  Not sure which has a better ring to it.

I should be sleeping right now.  That is the truth.  As any mom of any child, healthy or otherwise, will tell you though, it's pretty hard to turn your brain off and get some rest, especially at the holidays.  Keegan has been home from his most recent hospital stay for five days now, and we are resuming what we can best muster to be a routine.  I've been trying to ignore thinking it through for the last week or so.  I just am having trouble putting my finger on what has been bothering me.

By Friday, I had the Thanksgiving decorations finally packed up and put away.  So far, I have the following Christmas decorations out: stockings, a front-door wreath, the advent calendar, and the kids' nativity.  Not exactly the makings of a picture perfect Christmas.  I spent part of Friday and all Saturday afternoon just trying to purchase a few presents for my children.  If you are not one of my children, then I apologize, but it ain't happening this year.  Christmas cards?  Nope.  Baking?  Not around a child that can't eat.  Visit to Santa?  No to any public places with a severely immunosuppressed child. 

From the minute we arrived at the ER with Keegan the Saturday after Thanksgiving, I told myself I was okay with missing Christmas.  My mom and her friend, Denise, painstakingly put all our Christmas decor out two years ago when Keegan was inpatient.  It was so nice but so difficult to see when you came home for a shower and clean clothes before returning to the hospital.  This year, we said we would simply rather put the whole thing on hold.  But that's really hard to do when the rest of the world is going about their merry holiday way. 

Frankly, when your child is sick, you want the world to stop turning.  You desperately need the wold to stop and take notice.  But it doesn't...not for you, your baby, or anyone else.  I was walking through Target on auto-pilot Friday.  Needing to buy groceries but not sure what for, since I can't eat in front of Keegan or feed him.  Searching what was left of the toy aisles for something, anything, to give him or Audrey for Christmas.  And my brain just couldn't take it anymore.  I checked out with what few things were in my cart and slid back into the car.  Then my heart gave in too.  This isn't the way Audrey's first Christmas was supposed to go.  No, Keegan isn't in the hospital at the moment, but LORD, if that sickening feeling that he could be back in the ICU - or worse - at any..single...minute...doesn't just crush us every day.  And I felt like a complete slacker for not staying up all night just to put a tree and every single decoration out because I promised myself that I would make every minute, especially every holiday, count for Keegan.  And what if, what if, there isn't another one to celebrate...

I know this is turning into a big ol' pity-party-woe-is-me post.  Like my sister says, sometimes you don't want anyone to fix it, you just need to get it out.  It's not fair.  There's nothing I can do to change that.  I don't like the cards we've been dealt, but I have to play them as best as I possibly can.  This isn't about whether we did all the things you're "supposed" to do at Christmas.  It will be about what we make it as a family.  About the moments we share together and in praising the Lord for giving them to us.  I hope one day we can look back on this time and share a collective sigh.  Congratulate ourselves for just getting through it. 

We are not alone in the struggles we face.  I know too many families that will spend this Christmas without their child.  There is nothing more unfair than that.  But I know that God is with them...with us.  He understands.  He watched his Son suffer and lost a Child too once.  I am not proud of my moments of humanity, when I say I don't want to do this anymore.  I don't want this life for myself or my children.  But I will wake up tomorrow and do it again.  Because He is with us.  Because He sent His only Son to be born and to die for us.  And that is something I will never take for granted.

And an angel of the Lord suddenly stood before them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were sore afraid. 
But the angel said unto them, "Do not be afraid!  For behold, I bring you good news of great joy that is for all people. 
For today in the city of David has been born for you a Savior, who is Christ the Lord!
Luke 2:9-11


Team LaVire said...

This was hardly a pity-party. You have done exactly what you are "supposed" to do at the holidays - spread God's love and peace with others. I congratulate you for having the energy to live each day to it's fullest. God bless you all this Christmas!

Melissa and Brandon said...

It is so hard around the holidays with a little on in and out of the hospital. Especially with another little one that is healthy but so affected by the situation. I remember feeling so guilty 2 years ago for ruining my little Maddie's 1st Christmas and Alex's Christmas too. But then I remembered that they are in this crazy family for a reason too. A reason only God knows. Keep up your strength and faith. In the end that is what your kids will remember, not the decorations or the presents. We are always praying for your family :)