An interesting phenomenon has happened. Interesting bad, not interesting good. I will be turning 30 in just a few short days. I’ve been asked several times how I’m handling turning thirty. Every time I hear that I’ve been caught off guard because it doesn’t make any sense to me why it would bother me to turn thirty. I’ve actually been excited about it.
It’s not my own birthday that I’ve been dreading. It’s my son’s. Miles will be three in about two weeks, but I’ve caught myself avoiding the subject and even panicking about it. How is it possible that I’m upset about my son turning three instead of myself turning thirty?
Miles’ third birthday does not conjure up exciting birthday plans for me. I think about how therapy services will stop coming to our home. I think about renewals of services and new routines that will begin. I think about how last year he didn’t have a party (the first one of my kids to not have one) and how depressed that made me. I didn’t have a party because I was thoroughly exhausted from his body cast. Plus, I had given in to nurse care which made me feel defeated. Also, the thoughts of how no one seems to know what to get him for a present saddened me. We did have an extremely lame cake cutting over at Randy’s aunt’s house for his birthday since a family get together was already planned. Someone gave him a box of diaper wipes for a gift. It made me so mad I said bad words about it when we got home. I mean actual bad words that I can’t type here.
Then I also think about how Randy’s niece Amanda that also had cerebral palsy always had lame birthday parties. I remember the family, behind Sharon’s back of course saying things like: Why does she have a party for Amanda? Amanda doesn’t care. Or, I hate giving Sharon money for Amanda because what’s she going to spend it on?
I mean who the hell cares? What do you give presents for? To make people happy! If you can’t make the kid happy you can sure make the parents happy! We’ve all given presents to kids to actually make the parents happy. Giving a two year old diaper wipes for his birthday because he can’t enjoy a toy train does not make a parent happy. It’s just another reminder that he’s not normal. It’s just sad.
So, what do you get a little boy that is turning three that can’t do much but be adorable? There are many things. He loves noise so CD’s are great. Clothes are useful. The kids love to read him books. That’s one of his favorite things because his very favorite things are his brothers and sisters. McDonald’s money so he can take his family to dinner. Cards saying that you love him. Safari decorations for his room. If you really want to spend the big bucks you could get him an adaptive swing for his wheelchair in the backyard. That would only set you back about a thousand dollars. Diaper wipes, spare me the repentance.
Regular day thoughts about Miles are filled with love with an air of excitement about the day of his healing. Milestone days are also filled with love with a few dashes of mourning, frustration and bitterness. I wish it weren’t so, but it is. Do I worship the Lord on those days? Absolutely. As Miles’ birthday has begun to creep up on us I have taken on the position of thankfulness that he has a birthday to celebrate. The enemy’s plan for Miles was death, and he did not succeed. Miles will turn three and that in itself should be cause for celebration. In a perfect world this would be my continued position.
The thing is I’m also a mom. I have a mother’s heart. I long to see the unseen. As I patiently and sometimes impatiently wait to see the miracle I crave I’m forced to deal with things like this. I can only pray that I will be able to receive the grace needed to celebrate his birthday with a joyful and thankful heart for the blessing that he is today.