I Can’t Do This

I can’t do this.” I said it to myself over and over while the shower water rained down over me. “Please God, I just can’t do this.” When I finally shut up long enough to listen to God speak the first thing that came into my head was, But I can.

Months of lack of sleep, zero exercise, and bad hospital food will put a person in this mindset. (Hospitals, you are a hos-pi-tal. Time to step up the healthier food choices that doesn’t cost a fortune for the families who are now living there. I could write a whole piece on what families need while living in the hospital. But, one suggestion: underwear in the gift shop. Don’t ask.) I can usually take the day head on. Like I tell my kids, “You’ve got this.” But lately I feel like saying what one of my guys says, “No! I don’t got this!

I’m not the first person to cry out to God “Lord, save us.” (Matthew 8:23-27), “Heal him, Lord.” (Mark 5:21-43, John 4:43-54), “Take this cup from me.” (Luke 22:42). Sometimes God chooses to stop the storm and to heal the child. And sometimes he takes us through the valley of the shadow of death before we see the beauty on the other side.

I’ve always wished God would tell me his plan. I’d like to know what lies ahead in this life story. But then, if I knew this hard road had been coming, dang, I’m glad I didn’t see it coming. I’m glad God has his plan and he’s got this.

I can’t do this; be a wife, a mom, a nurse and keep my tears behind dry eyes. I had dreams of doing things in the medical field a lifetime ago. That didn’t happen for reasons upon reasons. But here I am, working (and living) in the medical field every day. I didn’t expect my patient would be my own child. Now that those long-lost dreams are alive and well in my everyday life all I can think of every moment is, “Please God, I can’t do this.” But God reminds me, He can.

Song that’s getting me through:

 

 

 

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If there’s one thing I’ve learned from Special Needs … Pray

If there’s one thing I’ve learned to do as a special needs mom it’s to pray.  Pray. Before everything else. Pray. When I’m overwhelmed and in the midst of the chaos. Pray. When there’s nothing else. Pray.


With my eldest I can remember two distinct times of prayer when he was a baby. Two times. Two times I cried out to God in need in those early years. I’m sure I prayed, but life was just easier with a typical baby. Or I was clueless. It’s very possible I just had no idea how desperately I needed God’s help with even the easiest of babies. But two times?

This is what the world of disability did to us. It threw us face forward into prayer. My husband and I knew right off we weren’t going anywhere without God in this journey. We hit our knees fast. Pray. I distinctly remember those first prayers. The, “Dear God, No.” The, “Please, Jesus. Just let <fill in the blank>.” To this day I get a knot in my throat, my eyes well up, when I remember those first days and first prayers.

“… the Lord hears when I call to him.” Psalm 4:3

Praying has since become a peace, a calming presence. While we still have our times of desperate prayers, prayer itself is a time that brings Christ closer. A chance for the Holy Spirit to utter words we cannot.

“… the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans.” Romans 8:26

Prayer is a constant conversation on many days. We recognize our inadequacy in this special needs walk. We have to release our constant eye on our son and rely on God’s. We pray and trust his protection more now than ever. I look to the Psalms and see this same constant conversation with God. The pleading, the valleys, the need for God’s intervention. But I also see rejoicing …

And we rejoice in prayer now more than ever. In the beginning of this walk we only saw the struggle. Now we thank God often for this path. This road has shown us how to go to God in prayer for not only our child with special needs, but our other children as well.

Christ himself taught us to pray (Matthew 6:9-13). It must be important. It took special needs to show me just how important it really is. Pray. It’s my lifeline. My instant communication with the only one who can truly offer protection, healing and peace in our special needs world. Before, in the midst and when there is nothing else, I pray.