Bringing our children to hospitals is something we can never get used to, despite how frequent and how bad the circumstances we have already faced. Witnessing every procedure no matter how simple or complex it is, is something a parent can never master.
I’ve seen my first child went through numerous intubations and re-intubations, being hooked to a ventilator, and being fed via feeding tubes, and finally needing tracheostomy. And then losing him after 7 months. During that time, IV insertion was the simplest thing he needed to undergo; and he got lots – on his tiny feet, tiny hands, even on his head.. My precious Ezekiel.
After Ezekiel, we got Matthew and Ruth. Both bouncing babies, yet they also have numerous health issues. From birth until a year ago, hospitals were like our second home. It’s as if they’re built because my family needs them. What made the difference a year ago? Essential oils. But that’s an entirely different story. One that we are thankful to the Lord for.
Recently, our Matthew has been complaining of numbness of arms and legs every morning. We were alarmed when one time, he didn’t have the strength to stand up and walk. As time progresses, I also started feeding him breakfasts as he couldn’t even lift up his spoon and fork. He was ok a few hours after, but having had to go to school and not wanting to be late, spoon-feeding him was the best way for us to go through our morning routine.
After several consultations with specialists, we learned that 85% of his airways were blocked when he’s upright, and worse when he’s lying down. The lack of oxygen while sleeping was causing all the numbness. The blockage was due to his abnormally large adenoids and tonsils.
We were made aware of the tonsil and adenoids problem when we got concerned about his snoring last year. We were told we could wait until he’s 12 to see if his condition would get better or we could proceed with the surgery right away. We decided to wait. Who would want to have their child undergo surgery anyway? The truth is, if we can prevent any invasive procedure, we will definitely do our best for that.
Sadly, with the turn of events, waiting was not an option anymore. He needed the surgery, and he needed it fast.
It was an easy procedure except that it made all the painful memories I had with my first child resurface. I cried not for what I have endured; but for what my children needed to go through. All parents want to shield their kids from pain; and that if we can just be in their place instead, we will gladly take it. And yet it reminds me to loosen up, to surrender everything to God because He cannot be mistaken for the circumstances He allows for my family. That in the end, everything will work together for good. God is the center of our family, and it always makes any burden light.
And it was done. The procedure was done a week ago and we’re back home right now. This was our sweet Matthew before and after surgery.
Look at him before the surgery! He was so innocent of what’s about to happen and so trusting of God, his parents and hospital stuffs. Such a sweet little boy.
In the bible, Abraham was commanded by God to offer His son Isaac. God said, “Take your son, your only son Isaac, whom you love, and go to the land of Moriah, and offer him there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains of which I shall tell you.” Did God really want Isaac to be killed? Ofcourse not! If we will follow the story, the command was for Abraham to realize he needs to trust and surrender to God. And God provided ram for an offering in place of Isaac.
Our children are our Isaac. While our parenting struggles are not uncommon, they are also not ordinary. For time and time again, our circumstances with kids don’t just remind us to live a surrendered life to God. They also remind us that God is reaching out and He wants us close, the closest that we can be – above all things, above anyone else. They remind us to entrust to Him everything even the ones closest to our hearts. And they remind us to not be strong by ourselves, but to trust that there’s always a ram waiting, one that is provided by the Lord, too.