The Weight of Worry
I had this horrible experience last week. I was at a café with a friend and her daughter, they had a playground and when we arrived it was packed. So many children running in all different directions. Immediately, I was already feeling a little bit overwhelmed and anxious, but I put Piper down to play and I made sure I stayed close.
Out of nowhere a little girl, who looked three years old and twice the size of Piper, came running up to her and pushed her. She pushed her so hard in the back that Piper fell right over and face planted into the ground. I ran over, the ten metres that I was behind her, and picked her up. I heard Piper do a little giggle, she thought it was funny, which put my heart a little at ease but I was still so shocked. I picked her up, shouted at the little girl, “No! You don’t do that” then suddenly reminded myself she’s just a child. Rephrasing with a softer voice I said to the girl “you have to be gentle”. Gentle didn’t seem to work as the little girl grabbed Piper’s hearing aid and pulled it like a lackey band on her head. My heart was racing now, I picked Piper up and retreated.
Still in a bit of shock I stayed for another ten minutes so Piper could continue to play but eventually I just had to leave. In the car, I just sobbed. I drove to Josh’s work so he could hug me. As I was driving to him, I was so upset, I had this evident realisation that I cannot protect Piper in every moment of her life. I was right there in this moment, but when she goes to school I just cannot protect her from other children. My heart really broke. I know kids can be cruel. I know Piper is different, but I don’t want her to ever be picked on for her differences. On the drive to Josh’s work, in hysterics crying, this voice kept saying, “but God”. “But God can protect her” and then I kept trying to mumble out “I trust you lord”.
Life is often full of worries. It wasn’t until I became a mother did this manifest in my life.
We are at a stagnant place with Piper at the moment. She’s still unable to eat; we aren’t receiving any reasons why other than “she’s complex”; she’s not allowed anything by mouth; they won’t test her swallowing until the end of the year; we are continuing her oral motor programme in the meantime.
We are really struggling with her weight gain as she’s losing weight; she is having severe bloating issues; we believe her reflux has come back and she is aspirating on it; she’s still suffering constipation; her peg site is infected and we can’t get it under control; she’s still on oxygen at night; we have been trying new diet changes the past few weeks but aren’t seeing any changes; we know that the mention of going back to formula and a feeding pump may be an option and I fear that we are only going backwards, especially from all the hard work we have put in with no obvious progress.
It’s an overwhelming fear of worry.
Scripture tells us ‘Do not worry about anything, instead pray about everything’. I can’t lie and say this fixes or minimizes my worry, but praying and laying all this at Jesus’ feet has a simple act of speaking my worry out and allowing his peace to flow through me, renewing me and that I can get back up and face our reality with an ‘I can’ attitude.
“You can throw the whole weight of your anxieties upon him, for you are his personal concern.”
– 1 Peter 5:7
God is able to bear all the weight of our worry. Because you are His personal concern, you never disappear from His radar screen.
He genuinely cares. I love that thought.
You have to find the right perspective when you go through hardships and storms, because if you cannot focus on something good then you will give up. Let’s face it, life is full of sorrow and disappointment, but when you fix your focus on what is good, you will come out the other side fruitful. God has promised that faithfulness leads to fruitfulness, if one does not give up. Moments of significance turn into breakthrough and reap a harvest.
“So let’s not get tired of doing what is good. At just the right time we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don’t give up.”
– Galations 6:9
I know this journey we are on with Piper is full of worry, for many different reasons, but if there is one thing I am learning is to change my perspective. In turn my faith is stretched and I am growing and I am able to push through whatever each day brings us. Some days are easier than others. Some days I feel like I can conquer it all and some days I feel lost, but I find something to be thankful for.
I sit in therapy with Piper a few times every week, whether it is speech therapy, occupational therapy, physiotherapy or the teacher of the deaf. I listen and I watch this beautiful girl I have been entrusted with. That God chose me to be her ‘mummy’. Her spirit is so bright, her smile lights up a room, she’s cautious and gentle but is fearless at the same time. She is tiny and petite but she is determined at everything. She can sign over 80 words and although she cannot speak she can communicate amazingly and she is such a great listener. Every few weeks when we are at the children’s hospital for appointments, she is patient. She is prodded, poked, checked and made to wait for hours. But she doesn’t complain. (thank you playdough and you tube haha) She barely cries, she now loves to go to bed. She pulls hilarious facial expressions. She is beautiful, and now she calls us by mama and dada.
THIS – this is why I can do this journey, because I know through the horrible pain and worry I can smile because of her. So many of these things are out of my control, but I can choose to focus on all this.
“But let all who take refuge in you rejoice, let them sing joyful praises forever spread your protection over them, that all who love your name may be filled with joy.”
– Psalm 5:11
Find joy in the hard places, it will be there you just have to search.