against all odds: you’re going to have a big family, Abraham!
It’s been a few weeks since I introduced Florence to a straw sippy cup. At first she wasn’t quite sure how to suck anything out of it, but one day she just got it. And since then she’s been happily sucking back water with her meals. I wasn’t quite sure it was necessary since I’m still breastfeeding her, but after a meal I offer it, she gets excited, gulps back a few sips and then I feed her milk an hour or so later. I’m hoping this helps soften her stools too. Sometimes I’ll mix a little organic prune or pear puree into the water to help.
She can hold onto the cup for a moment, but often her arms give way. I use a little pillow or prop up the cup, or simply put my hand underneath it. I’m trying to teach her that her hands are necessary for sipping! The daily struggles and victories of raising a baby with different needs are numerous. I’m sure any mum out there with a similar situation can attest. Sometimes it feels like I still have a newborn, which has it’s own beauty and baggage. I want her to soar, I want her to break things and reach out for potential choking hazards (I know). But I also love her cuddles, her sweet nature, her eyes that hold such depth and bore into the nooks and crannies of your heart. When one sense is diminished, the others increase tenfold.
This is only for a time, this I know full well. I’ve been reminded of that time and time again. I’m holding out for full restoration friends, whether you believe with us or not. I’m not giving up, I’m holding out for victory, I’m standing on His promises, I’m putting my stake in the ground and saying: God, you heal, you heal ALL. We are Abraham and Sarah, barren and yet full of faith. Hebrews 11:11 “By faith Abraham, even though he was past age–and Sarah herself was barren–was enabled to become a father because he considered him faithful who had made the promise.”
17-18 We call Abraham “father” not because he got God’s attention by living like a saint, but because God made something out of Abraham when he was a nobody. Isn’t that what we’ve always read in Scripture, God saying to Abraham, “I set you up as father of many peoples”? Abraham was first named “father” and then became a father because he dared to trust God to do what only God could do: raise the dead to life, with a word make something out of nothing. When everything was hopeless, Abraham believed anyway, deciding to live not on the basis of what he saw he couldn’t do but on what God said he would do. And so he was made father of a multitude of peoples. God himself said to him, “You’re going to have a big family, Abraham!”
19-25 Abraham didn’t focus on his own impotence and say, “It’s hopeless. This hundred-year-old body could never father a child.” Nor did he survey Sarah’s decades of infertility and give up. He didn’t tiptoe around God’s promise asking cautiously skeptical questions. He plunged into the promise and came up strong, ready for God, sure that God would make good on what he had said. That’s why it is said, “Abraham was declared fit before God by trusting God to set him right.” But it’s not just Abraham; it’s also us! The same thing gets said about us when we embrace and believe the One who brought Jesus to life when the conditions were equally hopeless. The sacrificed Jesus made us fit for God, set us right with God.
A pastor gave that scripture to us, and just like water, it filled my heart and lungs with life and truth. Against all hope (ie: there is no manmade cure for SMA), God made something out of nothing (ie: a creative miracle, bringing to life two SMN 1 genes, activating her muscles).
You’re going to have a big family, Jason and Michaela! (ie: when many in this world may stop having children, may selectively abort those children with this condition, may live in fear).
I was in Whole Foods yesterday and saw this sign:
I turned away, aggravated and upset. I suppose it’s because I don’t want to be a part of it, and I don’t want people aborting their babies because “something is wrong with it.” And yes, genetic counsellors actually do counsel you, and they can be very helpful and are great people, I’m sure.
I just get rubbed the wrong way by things I never thought I’d get rubbed by.
And that’s okay, because it builds strength and reliance on God, and helps us sort through the muck to receive the prize: which is why we’re here on this earth anywhere. We all have a destiny, formed in the depths of the earth before we were conceived. Sometimes it hurts to start walking down the path to that destiny though. But we can be trailblazers, trendsetters, pioneers, and generations to come can reap the benefit of our travails.
On a little side note, I wanted to bring to light a post by a blogger friend of mine, where she writes about Florence and I and faith and belief.
“There are miracles all over the world, everyday, that stem from belief. I think that Michaela’s faith is absolutely beautiful, inspiring, and life-changing.”
Please read her post here, it’s so lovely and honouring to me too. Thank you Melissa.