It is Monday night, a week after we found out about Audrey, and I am sitting with Kate while she falls asleep. Actually I am sitting with her while she talks about circles and Santa Claus while touching her toe to the floor and eying me tauntingly, quickly whipping it back on the bed when I peek over my laptop. It is her night to sleep with the bunny and she is taking her responsibility seriously. She read her a few stories and then tucked her in by her side.
This afternoon I had a chiropractic appointment with a new chiropractor that many of my friends had referred me to. He is amazing, and approaches the art of wellness as a Christian, which is amazing because he really does not know the “belief status” of any of his clients. He prayed over me as he worked, and to be honest, I felt much, much better when I left. He is insightful and kind, and he reminded me in a very hard moment who it is that we are both serving. It was really special and life-giving to me.
I decided to get my nails done after that because it felt like normalcy. Others who have been through a crisis might understand this feeling…we long for the quilt of daily life to be wrapped around us as we shiver in this new, unknown place. I listened to the women speak to each other and reveled in the fact that none of them knew my story and I could just listen and “be.” Well, God had a different plan. My regular lady was busy, so another sweet woman started for her. She had a very thick Vietnamese accent and because she was wearing a little paper mask, I didn’t have the benefit of lip-reading. She told me how much she loved my wedding ring and asked how long I had been married. Normal conversation for two people who don’t know each other and don’t really share a language.
“Six and a half years.” Polite smile…
I felt my heart stop. I wasn’t going to lie to her, despite the fact that I can barely explain the situation to my best English speaking friends. I asked the Lord for guidance, for strength, for words.
“I have three daughters and am pregnant with my fourth. She is very sick and will not live.”
Her fingers slowed and she looked up at me, to confirm that the look in my eyes matched what she thought she had heard. It did.
She took her mask down and told me how sorry she was. Her sincerity almost brought me to tears. Then she started to tell me about her babies. I didn’t understand more than approximately every fifth word, but I got the gist of it because I am a mommy, and we don’t always need to talk to feel for each other. Basically she had a scare in her pregnancy and thought there may be a problem with the baby, but it turned out she was fine. The absolute highlight of the story was when I asked about her labor.
“So, how was the delivery?”
“Pretty good. Fast. I was five cinnamon very fast.” (Cue sound of needle scratching off record)
“What was that?” She removed her mask for the full effect.
“Oh yes! I went from five cinnamon to ten cinnamon in one hour! So fast!”
I bit my cheek so hard I almost drew blood.
There are these moments like this daily, where God gives me laughter. He knows that my heart needs the medicine. I snickered the whole way home, and at the same time, I marveled at how two women with virtually nothing in common could share a few meaningful moments. It was unexpectedly beautiful.
(Update on Kate’s bedtime status….she just put Audrey-bunny in time-out for talking back. When she decided the punishment had fit the crime, she sat her up and is now teaching her how to sit criss-cross-applesauce….the bunny is acting wildly non-compliant due to the fact that she is, in fact, stuffed.)
This evening we had a really special time with the girls that I want to share with you all. We put the bunny on a chair and we told them all about her boo-boo’s. Each of the girls put a band-aid on her heart, and I answered the questions that they had about the baby….hence the raising of hands that you will see below. They are really amazing kids. So thoughtful and connected. What a joy to watch them care for this little toy with all the love of a real sister. I don’t know how much of this they really understand. I pray for wisdom daily on meeting them where they are, not too little and not too much. I would love you to join me in this prayer.
I have included some pictures of this evening so that you could feel like you were there. As a matter of fact, I feel that many of you are with me all the time. I had cried tears of gratitude over your partnerships. Please don’t ever feel for a moment that your offerings on our behalf are in vain; they are part of our momentary existence. May the God of peace hold you tonight as He is holding us.
p.s…..I can’t seem to post all of the pictures…not sure what the problem is…I will try tomorrow.
p.p.s……Kate is asleep:)