Thursday, February 26, 2015

"Do you ever wonder why (your baby was born so soon)?"

Father and son
Copyright held by the author. Do not reproduce without permission.
Last week Steve and I met a retired pastor. In the course of our conversation, he learned about our son’s ridiculously early birth and subsequent struggles.

“When you think about your son, do you ever wonder, WHY?” he asked.

“For every 'why,' there are twenty-three 'thank you's,” Steve responded.


My answer would have been, “Yes. I often wrestle with the ‘why.’ Why is he alive? Why can he see and hear and speak?  Why can he walk and talk and play and make jokes? Nearly every day I wonder why.”

I'm grateful my life partner is so much more eloquent (and concise!) than I.

To celebrate Steve’s twenty-three “thank-you”s (I never did hear what they were), here are twenty-three of my own.

1. Thank you for life through the night
2. For the opening of eyes and the ability to see
3. For plastic tubes and life-saving bleeps
4. For doctors and nurses
5. For breast milk
6. For the ability to hold one’s child
7. For the sound of a squeak of a cry
8. For kidneys that work
9. For intestines that digest
10. For therapists that understand and care
11. For laughing and smiles
12. For two staples and a scalpel used to heal a broken heart
13. For family and friends that stay away when sick
14. For family and friends that cleaned and cared and cooked when they were well
15. For PICC and central lines so that pokes are no longer needed
16. For brains and bodies that can get stronger – even if it takes hours of therapy
17. For the groaned prayers and lit candles of friends around the world
18. For the good sense to catch oneself when one falls – thanks for the vestibular system
19. For walking, and the tools that makes it possible
20. For talking, even if mumbled words
21. For peace beyond understanding when things are uncertain, and the comfort provided by sympathetic friends
22. For perseverance
23. For a chance

What are your "why"s and your "thank you"s?

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