More than all we ask

We moved into our current home two years ago, but we have yet to hang any pictures on the walls.

As a military family it’s hard to ever really feel settled.

The husband recently received notice of pending PCS orders. Permanent change of station. It’s time to move (again). And again we have begun the process of what Brandon calls negotiating and what I call fighting with the Army. We strongly believe we need to stay right here.

We believe it so much that Brandon was willing to take on a dangerous mission in Iraq because it meant our family could stay in place. Upon his return, he continued to make sacrifices that would enable us to remain here.

It’s hard for some to understand that it takes years of searching and advocating and tweaking and shifting to create a combination of programs, teachers, doctors and therapies that work for your special child. And that it’s amazing when you actually succeed.

It’s hard for some to understand when your daughter is severely impacted by autism and has a rare, hard-to-treat seizure disorder how important it is to have doctors and teachers who know her history because they have lived it with her.

It’s hard for some to understand what it means for a mother to know that at the end of the day, good or bad, her child had the best chances to grow and learn.

It’s hard for some to grasp how unspeakably detrimental it would be for a child who desperately needs routine and predictability to be uprooted from the home, school and community she knows and loves.

I’m so proud and grateful for my husband’s service to our country. With four years left until retirement, we are praying for big things. That he will not have to deploy this year, that we can keep our family together, that we can stay here.

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Rhema has this thing she does when she wants something. It comes from years of therapy – creating scenarios that prevent her from obtaining items on her own and forcing her to seek us out and make a request, using PECs or the communication app on her iPad or (hopefully one day) spoken language. As a result she rarely helps herself to anything (with the exception of the lemonade in the church fellowship hall). She always “asks” first. She just puts it – whatever it is – in your hands.

I’ll be doing my thing – cooking, making a phone call, going to the bathroom – and she will come and dump a box of popsicles in my hand. She does this to guests and strangers alike. A friend was visiting and Rhema, without a word, put a bottle of ketchup in her hand. My friend was confused and I laughed and explained that Rhema wanted ketchup. (I quickly made her some fries to go with her ketchup).

She has great difficulty communicating the way most of us do, but she trusts. She doesn’t always get what she wants, but she trusts enough to relinquish into our hands the very thing she desires. She knows we will withhold no good thing from her. (Ps. 84:11)

Lord, these things I’m holding… my family, this home, this life here, my hopes, the future and all that has been in my life until now. I open my hands, put all in yours…

Thank you.

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23 thoughts on “More than all we ask

  1. I can only imagine that this routine that you and Brandon have established is detrimental to Rhema’s continued growth and your sanity as well. I will continue to pray for all of you. Jeremiah 29:11

  2. I will be praying that you get to stay right where you are for the next four years and that Brandon doesn’t have to deply. I know that’s a lot to ask from the military (my BIL is a JAG and moves every 2 years like clock work.) but God is stronger and more powerful than even the US Army!

  3. Hoping and praying you have to stay and, if you can’t, God is already paving a way in the new place; something even bigger and better than you already have.

  4. Praying with you… God is good, all the time. Praying heartfelt prayers you will be able to stay, but trusting that even if there is a move in store, it will also bring good things.

  5. My heart aches for you! I have a dear friend who faced a similar challenge about a year ago. She ended up keeping the family stabilized where they were because it is just too hard on their son to move again. Her hubby had two or three years left til he could retire, and he went on to the next place alone. Some people criticized her – How can you not support your husband and not go with him?? Other people, like me, knew what it meant to have to choose and to have to put your special child ahead of your own heart, time and time again. It has been very hard on them, but with skyping (sp?) and emails and facebook and texting….and a lot of effort on both sides of keeping in touch, they are making it work. And about a year has already passed. He makes it home to visit as much as he can. It’s not all that different, I suppose, than if he was deployed overseas. And probably they have more contact with him this way than if he was overseas! I pray for your guidance. And your peace of heart and mind. Hugs!

  6. “she trusts enough to relinquish into our hands the very thing she desires” – no surprise, she is the wisest of us all. Keeping all of you in my prayers and sending love.

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