My life has been consumed by illness for so long that I didn’t know what to expect when I was blessed to become a mother. On January 8, 2008, I gave birth to Isabella Maria, and she transformed Terrence’s and my life. Up until then, Terrence helped to take care of me and worried about my health. I went to more than half of my medical appointments (I used to have 3 or 4 appointments per week) and depending on what the doctors’ had prescribed, I took most of my medicines (I used to be prescribed over 16 medicines at one time).
When Isabella entered our lives, we became consumed with her, her health and well being. Despite being born at 32 weeks, she was remarkably healthy, thank God. Still, she ended up having acid reflux; being allergic to milk; she had eczema; and she fractured her wrist at 18 months. All of these things worked themselves out–lots of babies have acid reflux; she outgrew her milk allergy; millions of people have eczema; and her wrist healed nicely.
What I didn’t expect was how much I would worry whether she would inherit one of my auto-immune disorders. I constantly check her hands to see whether they are too cold or whether her fingers are purple. I worry about what it’s like for her to see me experience a seizure or the after-effects of a seizure, like when I have a bruise or a black-and-blue on my face from a fall. She worries about me and about herself. I am supposed to be her caretaker, but sometimes she ends up being my source of strength, giving me healing hugs and kisses, praying for my health.
Isabella has not only been a source of inspiration to me, but she has changed the dynamics of my life. I listen to my doctors. I take my medicines. I make all of my appointments. I have a different investment in the longevity of my life. Isabella changed my life forever, and I am eternally grateful to God for the opportunity to be a mother.
People comment all the time, “it must be tough to be so sick,” “to have so many illnesses to deal with.” There certainly have been instances in my life that felt that way. But having Isabella gave me perspective. When it was just Terrence and I, I was extremely happy (I do love you T!). Isabella helped me to see that whatever trouble I may be going through, things aren’t that bad; miracles happen.
You have to take stock of the small and large blessings you have in your life. It may be God, your child, your family, your job, etc. It’s important to not let the circumstances you are living through overwhelm you to the point where they consume you and you lose perspective of the blessings in your life.
What are you grateful for in your life?