With all the energy and excitement surrounding the epic weekend we have planned for my oldest son (3 concerts in 4 days – see my post from 2/1/16), there is a LOT of music playing around our house… even more than usual! Bruce Springsteen’s “No Surrender” was on recently and the chorus often sticks in my head:
We made a promise we swore we’d always remember
No retreat no surrender
Like soldiers in the winter’s night with a vow to defend
No retreat no surrender
I love that song…and I often have it on my playlist when I am running. I like to run to that song when times are tough… when chips are down… when it seems the dreams I have for my family and myself aren’t playing out the way I planned. It’s a great song to keep me motivated to keep pressing on. And when I have that and “Eye of the Tiger” play back to back… well… call the paramedic!
But the past few weeks I have been sidelined from running due to a messed up knee, a busy schedule, the list goes on. Last week I was having a few days of leads that went nowhere, efforts that rendered useless, and dreams that were looking too far fetched to achieve. I started getting that feeling I can only describe as the “creepy creep up”. It’s not an overwhelming feeling… but rather it creeps in, slowly, steadily, and makes you start doubting your choices, your sacrifices, your efforts. Little by little I started to get easily annoyed, uncharacteristically short tempered; Just. Not. Myself.
And then I happened to be reading through my blogs from the past year and cam across the one about my journey as a mom. For some reason my computer went right to this part of that blog entry:
#Surrender My son grew into a happy toddler that happened to be blind. While I prayed for a miracle that his vision would improve, his vision worsened. After three years of being fully consumed with raising a blind child, my husband and I made the decision to go for baby #2. We knew our son’s genetic condition has a one in four chance, with every pregnancy, of having another affected child. The genetics counselor warned us. The doctors warned us. After considering all the information, we decided to move forward with having a sibling for our son and growing our family. I will never forget a moment, right around Easter, when I was having one of my “conversations” with The Man Upstairs. Okay it was more like a one way dissertation that involved me telling Him how this was going to play out: “I am not going through another diagnosis, period” was my statement. And then on and on I went with my ultimatums list… me telling Him how the Plan was gonna work…. that is… right up until my 3 year old, my most happiest kid on the planet 3 year old, my sing a song at every second and smile all day long 3 year old, came bouncing/skipping into my room and with a big smile said “Mommy are you in here?” “Yes.” I said as I wiped my eyes. “Isn’t this just the best day ever?” he asked. “Is it?” I asked him. “Oh yes” he said, “it is just amazing and I am just so happy”. And with that he skipped on out of the room, literally happy as can be. And there it was, the moment of proof, a moment I now see as one of many miracles: my son did not see his blindness as sadness, so why did I? He saw nothing but joy and love in front of him, so why wouldn’t I?
I realized as soon as I read what I had written that I knew just what my problem was: You see, I tend to be so very proud of the fact that I have built a team of support and an arsenal of tools to help me face challenges head on and live a “No Surrender” mindset. I won’t surrender to challenge. I won’t surrender to adversity. We are all taught that, right? Fight the good fight! Stay strong! Be brave! You got this! Yet, when it comes down to it, our journey isn’t about a fight, or a battle, or a victory. It’s about a Plan. A Plan that has been crafted just for us. A plan that is just what we need, when we need it, and for a purpose greater than ourselves. The only thing getting in the way of that Plan is our surrendering to it, trusting it, having patience for it to play out.
Ugh… if I could just remember that every day things would be so much easier! Well… I can at least try, right? I can work at trusting the Plan, surrendering to all that is out of my control, and enjoying the journey. Hmmm… stay tuned to see how often I remember that!
PS – Reminders will likely be necessary… often!