Monday, January 31, 2011

gut feelings

We're one week out from Mr. T's EEG. His haircut is scheduled. He says he feels good and he acts like he feels good. I have to write up a little explanation for his principal to read to his classmates before he arrives at class all connected and wired and wearing a baseball cap atop the works. I'm still praying every day and night that the seizures are gone for good. A lot of people are praying--family, friends, church elders, choir ladies, strangers, even Mr. G includes Mr. T at the end of his bedtime prayer.

There's no way of knowing if the seizures are gone yet, since his seizures start out quick (under 10 seconds) and look like staring spells. They increase in length, frequency and intensity the longer they go unchecked. We'll only know for certain after we hear from the pediatric neurologist.

My BFF asked me if I have a gut feeling about what will happen. I don't. I only know that God wants me to pray and have faith that He loves my son more than I do and that His plans are good. But I am not foolish to misunderstand "good." "Good" in the here and now for me would mean Mr. T's seizures should disappear forever. "Good" in terms of the infinite wisdom of the creator of the universe might possibly mean something different. Part of having faith in God is believing myself to be less than God, so despite His answers to my prayers for my son, I have to believe it's the right thing for the long run, for reasons I may not ever understand.

God wants me to rely on Him and His grace, and the more I do, the more peace I feel, the more I change through His power. I've seen Him drain anger out of me like He attached a straw to my heart--just drawing out the bile and venom I harbored for years in a process that took years because I stubbornly wanted to hold on to my feelings out of pride. I've seen Him make my life fruitful (and fruity)--filling it with more patience, more love, more kindness. If Mr. T's seizures don't go away, it's not because I didn't have enough faith, pray enough or do enough. This experience could be a lesson in continued reliance, patience, belief--all character builders that need to be in place for sometime later in life. God doesn't give us more than we can handle, and we're handling Mr. T's seizures.

I can look back at much of my life and see clearly through 20/20 hindsight vision where God allowed things to happen against my will. I also see where He allowed me what I wanted. I've learned a few things over the years:

1. Pray for exactly what you want. Spell it out, specifically, in no uncertain terms. Don't ask God for "a new job." Uh-huh. Ask God for "a full time teaching job in a big high school near lot of interesting people and opportunities. A job in a solid district where I've no chance to get a pink slip soon." I've prayed extremely specific prayers and God has blessed me with exactly what I asked of Him, but on His timing and in ways I never could've imagined.

2. Be thankful. If Mr. T's seizures haven't gone away, I am a better testament to my faith if I keep a good attitude. God has blessed us with excellent health, relationships and resources. We live in a safe and lovely place. My kids go to good schools, our neighbors are fantastic and we've got eternal security. I have to believe that if Mr. T still has seizures, it's for reasons I cannot understand. Maybe God works a miracle and removes them, maybe not. Maybe He will later. His will will be done. My kid's troubles aren't terminal. In the big picture, this is a blip on the radar. I need to keep it in perspective. The best witnesses are those who keep singing praise in the middle of tough circumstances, so no matter what those EEG results, we have to keep our chins up (our collective chins, I only have one chin so far).

3. Keep letting God call the shots. I have no idea where He's steering me or my family, but I believe it's for a good purpose. There's a lot of freedom in kicking back and letting God do the driving.

To sum up this uncharacteristically revealing post about my faith, I'm "letting go and letting God." I'm ready to jump for joy if the EEG results are what we want. I'm still praying and I'm grateful to everyone holding Mr. T up in prayer and to those of you sending all nature of positive thoughts.

If the results aren't what I want, I'll probably feel upset at first, but I'll swallow the bad news while I comfort my kid. We'll refer back to this: Be joyful always, pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus.--I Thessalonians 5:16-18

27 comments:

  1. Love this post. Thanks for sharing your faith with us and letting us come on this journey with you. Hugs and prayers for all of you.

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  2. Great post. I was praying for your son and you this past weekend.

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  3. You are so, so wise. And exactly right. I 100% agree with everything you are saying. God always does what is best and right by us, though we may not see the reason or understand it at the time.

    Thank you for this post. Brilliant!

    Thank you for your opening up to us about your faith. I think it will inspire and help others as well. :)

    God bless you and your beautiful family!
    I am praying!

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  4. Sending out all kinds of positive thoughts and prayers for Mr. T. My mom has epilepsy--the gross horrible kind. She's managed fairly well. Hopefully Mr. T's remain small or he outgrows them. (I've heard of that happening.)

    Whatever happens, it is to the good of our eternal souls. So we may not get what we want in this life, but we get what we need. And in each situation is an opportunity for our souls and hearts to grow. I wish you guys all the best.

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  5. Thank you for this lovely post. I have Mr T in my prayers.

    I'll pass this post on to others as well.

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  6. Sigh. So, so hard. We are all in a tizzy about Josh and school and what to do (it's getting a little late, he's a 2nd semester junior) and we just hope and pray it's the right thing. It was not a peaceful weekend here. I hope it all works out but knowing that we'll be alright no matter what happens is the best reward.

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  7. Oh, my friend. Thank you for sharing, and thank you for letting us all keep you and your family in our prayers.

    And letting go and letting God? Is seriously the hardest thing ever. I keep reminding myself that means that the outcome is seriously worth it. But the difficulty? Oh. My.

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  8. I will continue to pray for a good outcome for Mr. T. I so admire your faith.

    I don't want to sound selfish, but I REALLY needed to read this post today. Thank you. XO

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  9. It sounds like you have the right attitude. We'll all wait together.

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  10. I am glad this works for you and you get such comfort and guidance from your faith.

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  11. My Mom always used to say, "Let Go - Let God."

    What a powerful reminder

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  12. I think about you almost every day. The prayers are still coming. Take care.

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  13. Take care! These pediatric neurologists know their stuff. You'll have results soon, whichever way they go.

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  14. What a beautiful post for me to happen upon today.

    I agree wholeheartedly. With everything.

    Letting go and letting God isn't always easy, but it always is just what I need.

    Praying for Mr. T. Specifically.

    XO

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  15. I'll add my prayers as well. Prayers can work miracles at unexpected times and ways. Hugs!

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  16. Thank you for the update on Mr. T. I'm keeping you all in my thoughts as you go through this and hope that the seizures are gone.

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  17. what an awesome post and i feel so honored that you chose to share it with us. your faith is inspiring.

    i have another thing that i heard a while back and i try to remember it...

    F.R.O.G. - fully rely on God.

    so, i try to be "froggin" in all things.

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  18. I said another prayer for you this yesterday at Mass. I hope everything goes well for you all.

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  19. You are an inspiration! Still praying for Mr T...

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  20. I hope that you have good news. I can't imagine how scary it must be.

    I still have seizure activity measurable by EEG from a skull fracture and brain injury I had almost 14 years ago. My neurologist is hopeful it will never again develop into seizures, as long as I take good care of myself. Indeed, the only time I can 'feel' it is when I'm completely sleep deprived - so I try to make sure I always get plenty of zzzzs.
    Hang in there :-)

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  21. Sending your fam lots and lots of wonderful thoughts.

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  22. Was just about to type in the update about next week's test on ohbutno, but a link here will make a much more effective reminder.

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  23. I’ll repeat what I said at the beginning of this time of testing: We have strength for EVERYTHING through He who empowers us. Still praying too!

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  24. Unbelievable! Most amazing, heartfelt, passionate, and genuinely (not all fake and sappy) positive about whatever God's will brings forth. Your amazing perspective on what may come depending on what our Heavenly Father wills forth made me clap out loud in front of the computer. I'm giving it a new abbreviation: instead of LOL, it will be COL. Eh?
    I would like to spread some faith and hope for your dear son, who has probably been taking this all so well. What a brave child he must be to have been going through this at such a young age. Yet how blessed is he to have complete strangers tuning in to your blithe voice of echoing hope, in addition to all the kind people who you and he know personally. I say a quick prayer as I finish off this comment.

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Spill it, reader.