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Not Seeing the Big Picture

I Peter 5:7 "Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you."


Three years ago, on March 8th, we officially received a diagnosis of Spinal Muscular Atrophy, type 2 for our son. That day I made a Facebook post to share with all our family and friends. In it I stated that our family was facing "some adjustments". I look at that statement now and just laugh.

That was probably the biggest understatement of the century!

I look back over these last three years and I can't even remember what normal was then. Let me just say, it wasn't really normal then either. Three kids two and under is a whole other type of crazy. I am a plan ahead type of person. I like to see the "big picture". I want to know everything, all the possible outcomes and have a plan for each of them. I am so thankful the Lord knows better than I. I'm so glad I didn't know then just how many adjustments were coming; moving homes and chaning vehicles to accommodate a wheelchair, acquiring numerous medical machines, five hospital stays, learning terms I thought only doctors and nurses knew, adapting and changing our daily schedule more times than I can count, missing numerous outings and family get togethers due to illness, still getting up numerous times a night to roll Trevor over or readjust him or just check on him while sick.

I know more about our insurance policy than most people that work at the insurance company do. Our entire thought for the future has changed....bye, bye retirement age. It's not just the way we think about the far away future. You have to change the way you view next week or the next day, even.

Just when you think you've hit a good groove, something changes.

More extensive therapy is needed and they want to do a five week inpatient stay. Something is regressing and causing concern and needs to be addressed. The weather that day requires you to stay indoors for health concerns. Trevor caught a cold and now you need to be home 24/7 to do his machines every four hours and try to avoid another hospital stay. You realize you have to make that dreaded ER visit. Do you know how many texts/phone calls have to be made to readjust a day when you need to take your child to the hospital? Neither did I! And I still inevitably miss something!

We've had to adjust the way we parent our other children. They don't understand that if we could choose to not give Trevor as much attention as his health needs, we would in a heartbeat. They don't understand when we pray for Trevor to stay healthy and get stronger all the time that it's not because we love him more. Every time my five year old tells me, "everybody loves Trevor more than us", it breaks my heart a little more. Don't get me wrong, my children are ALL loved and way too spoiled by so many wonderful people in their lives. How, though, do you help them understand that the hour you have to spend with Trevor at bedtime is necessary to his health, and not because you love him more? How do you explain to them that when he yells for you because he's losing his balance, you HAVE to go now because he WILL fall over?

How do you help them see that you HAVE to sit by him every time because he needs help to eat? How do you convince them that ambulance rides and IVs are not something they are "missing out" on? I do agree with them that it isn't fair that Trevor has "experienced" those things and they haven't. Not because it's something cool or special but because it's not. No child should ever have to experience those things.

We've adjusted our definition of strong.

Physically, Trevor may be weak but he is, without a doubt, one of the strongest people I have ever met. If I had known three years ago that all these things, and many more, were in our future, I think i might have just given up. Each one of these things is a scary, hard change in it's own way but no certain one was insurmountable. All of them together seems impossible. We've all heard the phrases "step by step" or "little by little" but do we ever realize just how true they are?

Looking back over these past years makes me so grateful and thankful to the Lord that He didn't reveal the big picture all at once. I'm glad He still hasn't and that He won't. That He only gives us as much as we can handle at the time. When we are in the moment, each obstacle on it's own seems impossible but He knows exactly how much we are able to handle. He doesn't ask us to do it on our own! Isn't that a wonderful thing?! He can handle it all. Whatever it is you are facing today, no matter how impossible it may seem, God is with you. He is for you. You can make it through if you run to Him, lean on Him, trust in Him.

I don't know what seeming impossible task you may be facing today. It may be the death of a love one, a time of uncertainty on the correct path for the future, or the weight of responsibility of being a godly wife and mother.

One thing I do know is that you are not alone.

Cast your care on Him.

Renee is a stay at home mother of 4 and an unofficial "full time nurse" to our son. My husband and I have been married for 8 years. We are a soon to be homeschool family. I was raised in a Christian home and I've just in recent years started to understand what it truly means to live as a Christian. Not the "expected actions" of Christianity but living the reactions to realizing what an amazing, loving, all-powerful God I serve. To truly seek Him and know Him. That is what I want to share with others.

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