Each night I say a little prayer. I pray that God will keep my children safe, healthy.. and alive. I used to just pray that they would be safe and healthy. I used to pray that for Kathleen while she was still in my womb. And she is safe (with Him) and she was healthy. Still she is not alive (although she is alive eternally). So now my prayer has changed.
Alive.. It's an uncomfortable word to say and pray. I can't think of it and not think of the opposite. Dead. It makes me aware that both are possible. At any time. All moms worry and fear for their children, but once you have lost one it only intensifies.
I try not to let the fear control me, not to hold my boys back. To let them be boys. Yet my heart pounds and my imagination goes wild. What could not have happened to my Kaleb when he rode his bike backwards down the patio stairs? Or when he fell from a bunk bed? It was only a few weeks earlier that I had heard of a boy doing so and breaking his neck.. So my heart pounds. My imagination goes wild. And then I thank God that Kaleb is okay. That he is alive.
I go to check on Kaden while he is sleeping. To check that he is still breathing. He is wrapped, laying on his back, the fan is on - all things that increases the risk of SIDS. Yet I know it can still happen and so I check on him. The other day I put my hand on his chest and felt nothing. Nothing! An intense fear grabbed me. My heart pounded. Or did it stop? My knees got weak. I thought I was going to collapse. Then he took a deep breath. And I thank God that Kaden is okay. That he is alive.
Fear is always there, lurking underneath the surface. It's always there but doesn't have to rule me. I know I can't control a lot of things on this earth. I can put a helmet on my boy but I can't prevent him from falling. So I pray. I can't control all things but I can look to the One who IS in control. The One who is all-knowing, all-powerful. He who can make all things happen, and prevent others from happening. He could have prevented Kathleen from dying. But he didn't. He could have prevented his own son from dying on the cross. But he didn't. God has his reasons. His own son's death had a purpose higher than anyone of us can imagine or understand or comprehend. I don't know why Kathleen died but I do know that all things can be used for good, if we let them. And I know that my children are really not mine, but God's - that He is gracious to allow us to be caretakers. So I take care of them the best I can and leave the rest in God's hands. I leave it up to Him to keep my children safe, healthy and alive.
So each night I say a prayer.