Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Look How Far We've Come!

"See, the former things have taken place, 
and new things I declare; before they spring
 into being I announce them to you." 
Isaiah 42:9 NIV

Last week we took a year-end field trip with another family to a hands-on science museum about two hours away from home. We spent six hours there, playing on rope netting, splashing in a water feature, crawling through a manmade cave, studying the "recycling" dermestid beetles do to rat carcasses, climbing a ten-foot gyroid, and tinkering with electricity. We took a couple of breaks to go out to the car for a picnic lunch, drinks, and snacks, but the majority of the time we were active and busy. When we left, there were two moms and three kids who were tired, hungry, and ready to go home. We had a gift card to a restaurant about thirty miles away, so that was our plan for supper. 

The only problem was that we got stopped going down the mountain between one town and the next, in an area with no cell phone signal and no available alternative route. As you can see from the picture, the traffic was backed up for miles ahead of us, and it quickly backed up for miles behind us. We were stuck there. For an hour.

Two years ago, the two kids with sensory issues in the van would have started screaming about halfway through the wait, certain they were going to die from not having eaten, from not having moved their bodies out of the seat in so long, from the lack of vehicle movement. Even a year ago, the situation would have been almost unbearable for all of us. This year, however, although those kids were both aggravated and did plenty of complaining, fussing, and singing annoying songs loudly and over and over again, they stayed relatively calm for that hour. (It helped that we had a big bag of chips and some grapes left over to keep the hunger pangs under control.) There were no huge meltdowns, the smaller periods of freaking out were alleviated with humor, and it was a fairly calm and pleasant hour (as much as was possible with five exhausted and hungry people involved).

In the past, parents and professionals alike had assured me that things would get better for us as my daughter got older. On the bad days, I was skeptical. I had difficulty seeing past the moment to what might be. But I see it now. With age comes a bit of maturity, and many hours of occupational therapy and counseling haven't hurt either. She is a different person now, with quirks and challenges, that's true, but different from when she was first diagnosed.

I hope I'm continuing to grow and develop too, and that others are seeing a different me from the one they knew a few years ago.

Look how far we've come, indeed!

Pray: Father, thank you so much for allowing me to see the growth and progess in my daughter. Help me to stay focused on you and on everything you're doing in, through, and around me. I pray that others will be able to see growth and progress in my life too. I don't want to stay stagnant. I want always to grow closer to you and be transformed into Christ's image. Amen.

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