Not Mine

I’ve tried to convey this most recent development in my heart and mind to a few friends…I’m not sure it makes sense to anyone but me, but I’ll attempt to explain anyway. Maybe you’ll get me.

Since Finn’s shunt revision last Thursday, I’ve felt…well, fearful…but also this overwhelming realization that Finn is not my own. He’s really not my child. Because if he were like me (or Joey), he’d have been born healthy. And he’d have been the runt of the nursery. And he’d be crawling all over the place, pulling up on furniture and active as can be. His biggest health scare would have been an ear infection. I think if he were like Joey and I as babies, I’d take more ownership of him. Like somehow my health and abilities and childhood rubbed off on him. His strengths were because of me.

tired from the hospital

tired from the hospital

Once, while I was pregnant, a well-meaning gym member came up to me at the front desk. He asked how my pregnancy was going. I lied and said, “Great!” He told me that my child was going to be the healthiest child ever born. “He’s going to come out of the womb running.” I smiled, went back into the office and cried.

standing frame

standing frame

So if Finn were “like me,” maybe I’d be deceived into thinking that somehow I had something to do with his health or abilities or brains. But he’s different; so the Lord’s given me this palpable sense that Finn is HIS. Not mine. I’ve just been chosen to be his momma. And Joey is thankfully his daddy. We’ve been called to advocate for, protect, guide and cheer on this little angel here on earth…but his life is completely out of my control. Of course this would be true if Finn were a “normal” healthy child, but I’m not sure I’d realize it. It is a blessing to share life with Finn, no matter how difficult it will be. And it has indeed been difficult.

on a walk

on a walk

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17 thoughts on “Not Mine

  1. Oh friend. I have had this same thought many times with our lovies. Because ours came to us simply by miracle, we are reminded they are “not ours”. But when I have that feeling, knowing they are His, people assume its because its diffferent, adoption. Because I didn’t push ‘em out I guess? That’s why they’re not mine? nope! Its because I decided when their first mamas were strong enough to trust us, I needed to be strong enough to trust them to Jesus. But its not, you just dont know that unless you’re one of the lucky ones ;) We’ve been chosen too, and what a treasure of a responsibility it is!

  2. I loved this post. It’s so honest. I am sure having a kid with spina bifida for a new parent is to say the least, frightening. I would know, I grew up as one of those kids. I am 26 years old born with myelomeningocele spina bifida (paralysis from the waist down, for anyone reading who doesnt know what that means). I have only read this one post so far on your blog but it gives me the sense that you and Joey are already great parents. I am glad you are reachin out and sharing these things.

    • D.B., Thanks so much for your comment and for following our journey with SB. I think you are so brave and I respect all I’m sure you’ve been through on your own road. Your encouragement is so appreciated.
      -Ashley

  3. Thanks for sharing just a bit of the lessons God is bringing about in your heart through this sweet boy. I know the paths we are walking as mamas are very different, but I need that reminder about my own boys just the same: they are not mine!

  4. Totally makes sense. I think realizing that God can protect and love my child better than I ever can is a hard thing to grasp. Sometimes I want to fight for Duke to be “mine.” But the best times are when I have peace and joy in knowing that Duke belongs to HIM. Thanks for the reminder. :)

  5. I get you. If there is one thing in earth I should be able to claim as mine, it’s my children. Letting go of that took me longer than it took you :), but is surprisingly freeing. Thank you for sharing.

  6. As I read your posts I am struck how strangely familiar your story is to our own. Our little guy is a few months older than Finn, diagnosed with SB at our 20 week US. He has had one major shunt infection, and a total of 5 surgeries. Just like you, I have had to realize (and be reminded again and again) that this little guy belongs to the Lord.

    What a privilege to be his parent!

    God bless,
    Kim

    the5bennettgirls.com

    • Kim, thanks so much for following our journey! I’m sorry you’re having to endure these kinds of tough days/weeks/years too, but thankful we exist on the Lord’s strength, not our own. :) Thanks again for your encouragement. -Ashley

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