When It Hurts
My heart hurts this week.
The world is a mess. A bloody, broken mess.
The horrible killing, all over the world. And then, the reactions, the politics, the rhetoric. The closing up, shutting down and withholding.
All of it seems upside down and backwards. It’s void and cold. It’s not what I know to be true.
I feel small in the face of it. I feel stupid, writing about trips to the aquarium and doctors’ appointments, when children are dying right before their momma’s eyes.
It’s a luxury, being able to focus on my child’s needs, instead of on his literal survival.
My son crashed this week. By crash I mean he couldn’t deal well with his world. Sounds, smells, eating, sleeping – all of it feels insurmountable to him.
He developed a rash all around his scalp.
He screamed at his brother for the first time in weeks.
He refused to take medicines that had, just a few days before, been no problem at all.
He pulled the lycra sheets over his head and gave up, more than once.
At first, I thought he was just a little tired. He was out and about last week – super active, having fun and seemingly making a ton of progress. I assumed he would get a little rest and then get right back on track.
But no amount of rest is slowing it down. He is overwhelmed by his body this week. No reason. No warning. He just is.
And he hates it.
And I can’t help.
Every mom of a child with autism, or any other diagnosis, will tell you that they know hard things happen. They will tell you that they have witnessed first hand the deep searing pain of wanting to do something to help, but not knowing how. They will tell you that sometimes, you just have to take the next step and more importantly, find the good, the beautiful, the right and the love in it.
It’s a powerful lesson. One that I am only just now beginning to glimpse. One that I am pretty sure I will spend the rest of my life learning.
In pain, there is hope. In suffering, God is near.
So this week, as I pray for my son, I also pray for a world that is hurting, overwhelmed, and just like us, not sure how to deal with it.
I pray for relief, both in my home and abroad.
I pray for strength and wisdom, to figure out the next step without fear, both in my son’s room and in governors’ mansions.
I pray for the courage to take the next step, to do the right thing, no matter how scary it may be.
I pray that we learn the lesson again and again, over and over.
God meets us in the dark. He joins us in the suffering. He loves us in the broken.
And He always shows us the way.
“Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins.” 1 Peter 4:8
Shawna Wingert is a former training and development professional turned education specialist, and has homeschooled her two children for the last ten years.Shawna has written four books about homeschooling unique learners and has been featured in homeschooling discussions on Today.com, The Mighty, Simple Homeschool, My Little Poppies and Raising Lifelong Leaners.
You can find her online here at DifferentByDesignLearning.com.
I often wonder how kids in other, less developed countries, cope with the same illnesses that my kids barely cope with here. It makes me sad.
Oh my goodness, I think about it all the time. It must be awful. And it gives me so much perspective – how blessed we are.
I am so sorry to hear about your son. I pray that things will get better soon. As a physician-turned-full-time homeschooling mom, I suspect that the doctors tested your son for medication-induced lupus erythematosus, but in case they did not, you may want to consider asking them to check anti-histone antibodies (positive in 95% of patients with medication-induced lupus). Medication-induced lupus, also referred to as drug-induced lupus, has been associated with many different types of medications and of course, would not get better until one discontinues the medication that is causing it. Just a thought…
Thank you so much for this information, Janet! I am almost certain that they tested for this first, because of the medications he has been taking. But I am going to double check with his doctor to be sure. I really, really appreciate your taking the time to inform and educate. (Sounds like a homeschooling momma to me!) 🙂
Thank you for this. I’m suffering from emotional pain and have three young kids one of which has chronic health problems like I do. IT makes melt downs and fits a big part of our day. My middle son is very angry and has his own issues. My two year old is just two and needs his mommy. At times I feel like I’m drowning in my own emotional issues and trying to deal with them while my kids need me so much and l see all the crisis in the world and I just cry out for the Lord. We truly do need Him. Thank you for sharing.
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