Last night everything felt off. A deep sadness overwhelmed me. I couldn’t even explain the tears that welled up while I sat on the front porch, with my feet propped up on Matthew’s lap, my hand in his. The day had not been a bad one. It found me outside, staring into my empty cereal box, like the rest of America, to see as much of the solar eclipse as we were granted. A 73% eclipse isn’t too bad, actually. The crickets started chirping and the atmosphere got a bit cooler and almost orange, like when a thunderstorm is rolling through but it’s still sunny outside. Harry busily put tiny rocks into his mouth and then spit them out every time I made a “blah” sound.
Yet I couldn’t shake this feeling.
Then this morning I woke up to a precious text from one of my best friends, reminding me what had happened four years ago. When I had called her in the middle of the night to pray. When I stared at the dark, stormy ocean I thought for sure would swallow life that night. I clung to my Bible that night, tears wrinkling the pages of the Psalms I read, while I stared at Matthew in the hospital bed. He was very still, struggling to breath, but the amount of steroids they gave him over the course of the night and into the morning saved his life, and he emerged smiling, yet with very little voice. Subglottic stenosis. His airway was but a pinhole the night before, which has altered his voice ever since. Scars do that. They change us.
Then another precious text from another dear friend. She reminded me that it’s okay to both grieve and rejoice. To lay my grief at one altar and my thanksgiving at another. Thanksgiving, so I never become bitter, and grief, so I never make an idol out of the blessing and gifts God has given. So, even though it’s been four years, I do touch that scar and let the tears flow a bit. Feeling the gift that it is, because it is a rich reminder of His Presence which always goes before us. He gathers our tears in a bottle, and knows which ones are from grief and which ones are from thankfulness. Bless the Lord O my soul and forget not all His benefits. Who forgives all your iniquities, Who heals all your diseases!
I asked Matthew how he feels today, and he simply said: “I feel amazed.” He is playing soccer tonight and preaching the gospel! There’s a WHOLE lot of thanksgiving about that!
Yesterday marked another momentous occasion as well. Matthew officially began working for himself again. Weldon Carpentry is back in business, and we are both excited for this new chapter. We are praying for a work truck for him, so if anyone has any leads, we’re all ears! We’re excited to see how God will provide!
Well, tomorrow is the first day of highschool for Nadine and Elijah. We have an incredibly early start, and I’m a bundle of nerves for them. I sense a whole lot of growth in the upcoming months. As I have pondered the past 9 months, our family has experienced six huge NEW changes. Yet nothing surprises the One who orchestrates the perfect alignment of the earth, moon, and sun. Nothing is beyond His ability. Nothing is impossible. From solar eclipses to subglottic scars to unbelievable struggles which leave invisible marks… He is aware of it all and cares so very much about me and you.