Thursday, May 19, 2016

Our Story - Part 2

On May 29, 2014 our beautiful princess was born.

I remember the morning she was born. The birth was pretty quick; in fact, it was so quick that my husband had to help deliver the baby. My midwife was only there for about 30 minutes before "T" made her entrance into the world.

It was a comparatively easy birth, but all of a sudden, my midwife said, "Does she have six fingers?"

I was like “Is that even possible?”

When she confirmed it, I was blown away. At first, it was kinda cool, kinda different…

...wait… it was different.

Then the fears that had bound me over all those years came crashing in on me all over again.

I, of course, thought that my baby girl was the most beautiful little girl in the world, but I was so afraid that others would not think that. (Just because she was a little different)

A few months later, as I was battling these issues, I had to teach our yearly girls “retreat” and I decided to teach about inner beauty. The conviction was so strong in my life that I decided to face up to my problem and be real with these teen girls. I knew I would never be able to teach Twila about inner beauty if I didn’t "get it" myself.

I shared the story with the girls and online in a blog post called "I've Got A Secret".

The responses were astronomical. I had women writing me and telling me that they too had dealt with something like this. Many of the girls shared with me that they themselves had something they were embarrassed about.

It was the beginning of a new freedom and new beauty in Christ.

I wish I could end my story there but this little girl had MUCH more to teach me.

The precious little girl, herself, went through a terrible journey as a baby. We knew she would have surgery on her extra fingers and toes but we never saw what else was coming.

In October, at only 5 months old, she ended up in ICU with RSV, after having just fought pneumonia.

Then she got sick again right before her scheduled surgery. However, through answered prayer, she fought it and was able to have the needed surgery.

She wore little boots and bandages for a few weeks and, after a few more visits, we thought we were done with the doctors for a very long time.

But the next April, she ended up in the hospital again with RSV. But this time, she didn’t respond how we expected. At one point she gave up fighting and the machines had to breathe for her.

It was terrifying for a mommy’s heart. My heart still catches when our little "T" starts coughing or gets sick..."What ifs" plague me. It was a hard time but God gave us strength.

Also, during that time, the Lord gave me a heart for mommies. Mommies whose lives were not what they imagined they would be. Mommies who had sick babies. Mommies who lost their babies. Mommies of all kinds, with burdens seemingly too heavy to carry.

It gave me an awareness of how to help mommies in these situations and I even wrote about it: How To Show You Care and "Help"ful Suggestions.

Over and over again, I have seen God's fingerprints ALL OVER MY LIFE, directing me to help someone else because of what I have gone through.

"Who can have compassion on the ignorant, and on them that are out of the way; for that he himself also is compassed with infirmity." - Hebrews 5:2

It's a beautiful thing to know that our Savior KNOWS our pain. He has felt it. There is just something about a friend who understands what you are going through.

I truly believe that we are given what we are given so that we can help others.

God really grew me through the trials He gave me. He gave me a heart for those who are hurting. He gave me a special compassion for those with medical issues and a huge heart especially for moms. I truly believe my desire to minister to woman came from what I have been through. It has molded me and made me into a completely different woman then I would have been if I had never gone through them.

Tomorrow, I want to finish up by taking you back to those amazing Bible characters. - Stay tuned! - Rejoicing in the Present

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