I will not tell you, we will not tell you that Lex, Joel, and I do not have our moments or the countless others who have seen her and haven’t seen her, that they don’t all have their moments near or far as they may be in this with us. Yes, God is holding us up and strengthening us. Yes, He puts her and all of us on your hearts and through prayer; we become strengthened to push through it all as needed, in the moment.
BUT, we are also…
A brother and sister,
A close friend,
A fellow student,
A DMB family member,
A social media follower,
A stranger who reads the paper and watches the news and feels –
A friend of a friend…
Whoever, whatever, and wherever you are, we are human, and not divine. This means that it’s OK to break down and cry. It’s OK to accept you’re not a superhero, made of steel, or military – trained to endure hardships and crazy-serious traumatic injuries. We are first human, and I will bare my own heart before you in the shadows of the moment. Why shadows? Shadows are the dark areas of trial, pain, and suffering in our lives that try and break us down to despair, BUT in God they do not overcome us because of the rays of His Light beaming down hope in their midst.
You see, it’s in the shadows that my husband and I were able to cry and comfort one another while she had body scans done, and we were being encouraged by the nurses telling us she was doing great.
It’s in the shadows that co-workers showed up and just seeing them there and willing to do whatever was needed gave us hope and strength.
It’s in the shadows that a nurse and believer took charge and was guided by the Spirit of God Himself in what to do in the short term and long term, words shared that echo in us to recall in our time of need.
It’s in the shadows that we wrestled with having her in the best place for her type of traumatic injuries, and we took a moment to pray in our weakness and submission to Him. Her blood pressure dropped drastically, and the door was opened for her to be moved to a better facility. Five minutes later, it regulated again.
It’s in the shadows that my husband’s co-workers drove to our home to pick up our hospital bag for us and deliver it right to us in Charlotte.
It’s in the shadows that the same nurse who gave us wisdom that we would need for the here and now, and future pulled us together to pray before she went in the ambulance.
It’s in the shadows that while in the ambulance, the paramedic who was caring for her was the wife of my husband’s co-worker.
It’s in the shadows that when we arrived to the trauma room in Charlotte that I looked up and saw a doctor I recognized because we were just in this same hospital 1.5 months before. He walked over to me and I said, “You look familiar,” to which he replied, “I worked on your son when he was here a couple of months ago.” Then, he proceeded to announce to the trauma team unit, “I know this family. They are a good family. Let’s give their daughter the best care!”
It’s in the shadows that I can walk across the room while they are changing her sheets and she is writhing in pain, and meet Joel’s arms for us both to be held in an embrace and me to cry softly.
It’s in the shadows that we wait in the OR and blessed family and friends come to join us and pray with us, just being there for us.
It’s in the shadows that while 5 of us are waiting in the OR, a co-worker of my beloved husband, comes with his precious wife to deliver food; 5 sandwiches, 5 fries, 5 drinks – they did not know there were 5 of us!
It’s in the shadows that the doctors who were worked on her hand and face, and her hand again the next day – ALL took their time and were super understanding, loving, and encouraging us.
It’s in the shadows that Joel stands bedside for 6 hours straight with such gentle and detailed care, looking way beyond the temporal and deep into the eternal eyes of a beautiful spirit of God. It’s precious to see and feel true love.
It’s in the shadows that my husband witnesses her draw strength from praise and worship music as she mouths the words, calming herself down.
It’s in the shadows that I look at AJ and I am overcome with gratitude at the saving of her life.
It’s in the shadows, that I am able to see the rays of light that are beaming through in the countless mercies of her injuries.
It’s in the shadows, that I pause and reflect – Selah – at how God reminds us that this is much more than we can ever bear and He gently and lovingly reminds us that He has this all under His control.
It’s in the shadows that Joel, her boyfriend, breaks down in a cry before her realizing how blessed we all are to still have her here.
It’s in the shadows that God puts it on the hearts of beloved friends to bring meals without us even asking to provide for our family.
It’s in the shadows that our precious and awesome neighbors pull together for us to help us with lawn care and food, all the while understanding what we are going through at this time.
It’s in the shadows that I was able to speak with her professor who was so grateful she was alive and said that due to her good grades, she is still receiving an A despite not being present for finals.
It’s in the shadows that co-workers of my dear husband, Lex, take our children- 2 days in a row no less, and cater to their needs and bring them joy in their shadows.
It’s in the shadows that after a difficult morning from her irrigation and pain that 1 of her favorite uncles walks in providing such joy and tenderness by her side.
It’s in the shadows that countless friends have texted, emailed, and provided such uplifting messages for her, lifting us and her up.
Yes, there are shadows – but the beams of Light are beyond comprehension, and immeasurable, innumerable!
On behalf of our family and friends, of whom many we consider extended family, – you are all necessary beams of Light that make these shadows bearable and beautiful!
Thank you all from the bottom of our hearts!