We sat on the dirty kitchen floor with tear-stained cheeks and ate jelly beans together in silence, my three-year-old and me. Neither of us had really won the battle that had just been fought. We had gone into war as enemies (at least in her mind), but jelly beans joined us as allies once again.
Our fighting and our tears were for different reasons, of course. She’s strong-willed. She’s a fighter. God created her that way intentionally- she needs that fight to survive. Tonight it was over her medicine. Oh, how she hates this new medicine! There’s no reasoning with a toddler over why taking medicine is important. And she’s smart enough at this point to detect it in anything we try to disguise it with. So, tonight I wrestled her in the floor to take it, endured the hitting and scratching and screaming, and prayed that once I got it in her it would stay down.
And then I cried with her. Because sometimes it’s just. not. fair. Sometimes I just can’t understand the why’s. Sometimes I just want the ride to stop for a bit. Sometimes I just want to feel normal again. There have been a lot of these small moments lately that build up into big feelings… Watching my daughter seize and lose control of her body. Watching doctors and nurses surround her while I stand helplessly to the side. Getting to know paramedics and ER nurses by name after calling 9-1-1 so many times. Sleeping with one eye open to watch for seizure activity at night. Being haunted by visions of blood stained sheets from failed IV attempts. Knowing that every minute of every seizure puts my baby at a higher risk of not-good things. And having to fight and force her twice a day to take something that she hates because I know she needs it to keep her safe and with us.
And that’s it. She’s with us. These moments can be hard and frustrating and even sad, but they’re just moments. And moments pass, and I still get to enjoy life with this girl and my other two incredible girls. It can be easy to wonder why we have to walk this path, why there’s so much pain and struggle in the journey- but it should be just as easy to wonder why God has chosen to bless us as much as He has. So often I’m that toddler in the floor, crying and fighting against what God is telling me is for my own good, pushing against His best plans for my life because it isn’t what I want… But He still loves me. He doesn’t give up on me. He’s still good, and His ways are still perfect. I don’t have to understand it or know what comes next or really even like the process- I just have to choose to trust the One in charge.
As I find rest in that truth tonight, I pray that those of you who are in the midst of your own battles can pause for a moment and focus on His goodness, finding comfort in His perfect sovereignty. He loves you. His plans are ultimately for your good. He will not desert you. Rest in that this evening- and maybe eat a jellybean or two while you’re at it.