I had a flashback in an airport restroom when I went to visit my sister a couple of weekends ago. In that very same public bathroom almost seven years earlier, I was puking my guts out upon flying home from what was supposed to be a babymoon with my husband. Instead of babymooning I had spent four days in a San Diego hospital for two pulmonary emboli–blood clots in my lungs. I had recovered just enough to fly back to Texas, but was still very sick. It was a scary time. It was a hard time. I was sick, pregnant, and homesick. We had only moved here a few months prior. I wasn’t so sure the Lone Star state was all it was cracked up to be.
I look back at that time as extremely hard, but now it seems less painful because it’s passed. It’s tempting to apply the well-known phrase This Too Shall Pass to that time in my life. Because that season, as hard as it was, did come and go. I grew through it, and became even more grateful for my life and the life of my baby who was born later that same year.
In fact, once my baby was born, things took a drastic turn here in Texas. I was head over heels in love with my son. I could have lived on Mars and cared less. I enjoyed one of the sweetest seasons in my life.
But the last two and a half years I have been living a new medical trial, because of my second baby’s syndrome. The difference is, this trial is ongoing. It’s not passing. Only changing. A different, less optimistic phrase, keeps running through my head. That phrase is This is a life sentence. And it is. But I can’t sit around waiting for it to pass or get easier either. In fact, just this week Nathan got another diagnosis added to his already long list. So I’m in it. For better or worse.
The thing is, neither This too shall pass or This is a life sentence quite addresses the hard stuff.
Neither is all that helpful.
Neither gets through to my broken heart.
Something does though.
There is a plaque in our church courtyard that says, “I am the Lord, the God of all mankind. Is anything too hard for me?” (Jeremiah 32:27) I first read those words engraven in stone seven years ago when I was going through my first pregnancy those health issues I just described. That was the health crisis that I healed from. Those words–God’s true, timeless words–are again words of life to hang onto in the midst of dealing with Nathan’s syndrome and all of the ongoing issues it is bringing into our lives.
I find myself trying to shed those unhelpful colloquialisms churning through my head and cling onto the truth instead. When I am able to grab on–and I’ve needed to this week–I find myself answering, “No Lord. Nothing is too hard for you. Nothing.”
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