700 Club (Television Program with Pat Robertson) shares Christopher's Miracle Story

The 700 Club with Pat Robertson

Christopher's miracle testimony was featured on the the February 4, 2014 episode of THE 700 CLUB. Please watch our VIDEO and share it with your friends and family.

Friday, August 16, 2013

"Party of one"

Since I wasn't able to hold Christopher very much, I spent a lot of my time standing next to his crib talking to him and stroking his hair.  I had a supply of his favorite blankets and stuffed animals.  There were colorful balloons adorning his IV poles.  Sometimes he would follow them with his eyes.  I guess he needed a distraction too.  He had been in pain for many days now, and his spirits were low.

All smiles!
When the doctors made their rounds one morning, I told them that Christopher seemed depressed.  He slept all the time and never smiled anymore.  His eyes always looked sad, and his face seemed full of grief.  I asked if babies ever get depressed.  I had really never conceived of that idea before, but maybe in a situation like this they do.  The doctors who were gathered around were unanimous in the opinion that babies can experience depression in certain rare situations.  Who knew?  Every baby I had ever seen seemed blissfully unaware of anything going on around them.  Their biggest concern seemed to be being held, fed, and diapered.  It didn't seem to me like babies were even wired to be depressed.  I just hadn't imagined that depression could be a part of their experience, so why did it have to be a part of my baby's experience?  It seemed so unfair. 

I tried to brighten Christopher's mood in anyway I could.  I talked to him, sang to him, and massaged his aching little body.  The nurses put a soft pad underneath him to help him feel more comfortable.  They even swaddled him tightly in his favorite blanket to give him a sense of security.  One of the nurses even joked that she was wrapping him like a "little burrito."  I tried to smile and speak in encouraging tones to "my little burrito" as much as possible in order to reassure him.  I even played soft music to soothe him. 

I don't know if any of it really made a difference for him, but I had to do something.  I felt so helpless and useless.  A mother is the one who is supposed to be able to comfort her baby, but I wasn't able to relieve his pain.  Only time could do that, and it seemed like time was standing still.  His recovery was painfully slow and long.  It was no wonder that he was depressed.  He had every right to be, and he wasn't the only one feeling that way.  I was depressed too, but I tried to stay positive for his sake.  I refused to allow myself to cry or become consumed with grief.  I had to stay strong.  Christopher needed me to be.

When Christopher was sleeping, I would fill my time with coffee, books, or talking with our roommates.  Sometimes there would be other parents in the room I could commiserate with.  We would discuss our children and the terrible fate they were living out.  We would listen to each other's stories, bounce ideas off one another, and lift each other up as best we could.  It seemed like a futile attempt to find some sense of balance, normalcy, and camaraderie in the midst of our broken lives.

Our sick children were what we had in common, and it linked us in a special way.  There were aspects of this that other people, try as hard as they may, just couldn't understand.  It's one thing to hear about something bad happening to someone elses child, even if it's a child you know, but it's another thing when that sick child is your child.  It's not that others don't want to understand.  It's just that there is a certain unique understanding when it's happening to your child. 

It's difficult to explain.  It wasn't that I was alone in this.  I had a huge support team.  My family and friends were always there, always looking to help, always trying to listen and support me.  It's just that sometimes you feel very "alone" with it because it's your child.  It's happening to you.  People would visit everyday.  They brought love, support, and lots of food.  Everyone was helping out with Michael and Ryan.  Auntie and both grandmas were on the job.  They took turns caring for the boys, but sometimes late at night I would be alone with my thoughts.  I would realize that ultimately this was my child, my problem, my challenge.  Other people could help me through it, but in the end it was my responsibility.

Mike and LeAnne..."party of two"
Of course, my husband was there too.  It was happening to his child too, but he had to work to support the family.  The bulk of Christopher's care fell on me.  I was the one in the trenches, and I wouldn't have had it any other way.  It was hard, but I had to do the hard thing.  I wanted to.   It's just that it was kind of a lonely place to be sometimes.  It was like being in a crowded restaurant and all you are is "a party of one."  It's no fun to eat alone, but sometimes that's just where you find yourself, alone.  It was like that with this too.  Even though I was surrounded with a crowd of supporters, I was still a "party of one."

If you have never accepted Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior, you can pray like this:

More tomorrow...

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