It seems fitting on a Sunday to write a bit about church – or at least using worship as a perspective. (Please read this post with your own deity or belief in mind – as to not offend). Posts like this are difficult to write. I dislike writing what I’m about to write – but I promised to be honest. I know readers may say, “I can’t believe she would say that!” If you think that…just wait until the end. Hang in there with me.
I teach a class called Interpersonal Communication. It’s an entire class devoted to the study of relationships: friendships, family, acquaintances, romantic, etc. I devote an entire week to emotional intelligence because it’s a ‘know thyself’ issue for me.
My mom used to say, “You cannot be successful in a relationship if you are depending on someone else for your happy. You have to be happy first. Then, you can be a contributing partner.” (She forgot to mention the part about making sure that the other person was also happy so they don’t depend on you for their happiness….I was sucked into those relationships in my younger years).
Anyway, in that class I teach/tell my students, “All feelings are valid. Everything you feel is real. It’s how you deal with that feeling that is the real test.” Taking my own advice here…
So…what is it? What is it that I don’t like to admit?
I think all of us at one time or another in life ask this question – about children, parents, relationships, jobs….
I asked the same question.
I did everything right during pregnancy. I vomited constantly – but always choked down my vitamins, cut out caffeine, increased my iron and folic acid intake, went to every prenatal check-up, I did it all. So, this ‘diagnosis’ of autism seemed very unfair. I know life is not fair (as my dad would say, “The fair is in August.” or “Fair is not equal and equal is not fair.”).
One day during worship my Pastor gave a sermon entitled, “Why not?”
It struck me…why not me? It was one of those life-changing moments. God knew that I would read everything I could and I would ask questions. I would advocate, I would alter lifestyles. I would do everything within my power to constantly provide the best environment for Tucker to survive, even thrive.
There was a boy who lived down our street. He was born to very young parents who had quite a history. He was pretty much on his own at the age of four. He spent A LOT of time at our house. So much so, that my children referred to him as their brother (even now). There were moments while he was at our house that I became angry – well actually, it was jealousy. Not that he was there, but that he was so ‘developed.’ He was the same age as Tucker and yet, so far ahead. SO. FAR. AHEAD.
He could ride his bike.
He could tie his shoes.
He talked to everyone.
He tried new things.
He would look at me when talking.
Then, that Sunday I realized something.
The Lord entrusted this very special boy to me. Why not me? It was at this moment that I became thankful that the boy down the road was given to his parents. He didn’t need the type of care I could give. He needed to be independent. He needed to have advanced skills for simple survival.
Tucker couldn’t have reached his potential in that house.
Tucker needed me. To question, advocate, alter lifestyles – to do everything in my power to help him thrive.
Why not me? Now, it reminds me of this song, newly released song by Matthew West.
How very blessed I am to be entrusted with something so precious…why not me?