Monday, October 25, 2010

The Lucky Ones

*Change it or let it go. Complaining is a waste of energy.*

I heard someone say this recently and I've been thinking about it a lot. I had a little pity party the other day, but I did indeed snap out of it. I know my mood was more related to all the cloudy days and humid weather we've been having rather than the fact that I actually have a life worth complaining about.

It usually takes a good but busy day at work to give me perspective. I may whine a little (okay, a lot. It's a problem.) about working 14 hour days from time to time, but at least I get to leave. I get to go home to a quiet house and forget about the hospital for a while. I cannot fathom sitting by my own child's bed, relinquishing every bit of parental instinct and control, for over 100 days. When I see a mom who is able to invest that much time, that much love, into her perfectly imperfect child, it breaks my heart. Every time mom tears up, I find myself doing the same.

Some days the NICU overwhelms me (as does projectile vomit) and I wish I could tell mothers everywhere: you think you have it bad? Pick a random baby in the NICU and I guarantee they have it so much worse. (But please feel free to remind me I said this in a few years when I'm awake at 3am with a fussy baby of my own).
There is no greater love than to give your life to another. I was so honored to see this love in action today. Please, if you have a little one at home, no matter how long your day (or night) may be, thank God that you're at home and not in a cold, loud hospital trying to sleep on a pull-out bed. (And if you are, my prayers are with you).

I will admit I am often jaded: how is it "fair" that one irresponsible mom can have a perfectly healthy pregnancy and delivery, while a perfectly healthy mom can go to a happy prenatal ultrasound one day and receive news that will forever turn her world upside-down? (Disclaimer: I also absolutely witness bad choices during pregnancy harming the baby and healthy choices during pregnancy leading to amazing outcomes. But other times there's no rhyme or reason, and it scares the crap out of me!)

However, I left work today grateful for 3 things:
1) That I am able to leave work, the hospital, and the drama behind me for a few hours.
2) The ability to witness the strength of the human spirit and our ability to place our cares on a greater God when we literally cannot carry them another day.
3) A deep and profound appreciation for my own health and my own life. 

I hope you find something to be thankful for tonight as well! 

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