I've been prepping for this Orthopedic visit for weeks. I've thought about what to say. I've worried about what the specialist would see or notice in Micaela. I've strategically decided how to convince the doctor that we needed the braces immediately.
Micaela's therapists have all been very concerned about her weak and crooked ankles and I trust these professionals who have big hearts and want the best for my little girl. So, I wasn't going to walk out of that clinic without getting her fitted for braces.
There was a long line. The waiting room was full of anxious parents and hurting children. But my thoughts were all centered on Micaela and our own problems. We checked in and then I scurried over to a corner, wanting privacy and more time to prepare. I sat down, handed Micaela a toy in the stroller and leaned back. Next to me a lady softly rocked a tiny bundle.
I paused. The jet black strands of a sleepy newborn's hair peeked out of a soft green blanket. I couldn't help it. My vison got misty and I leaned out just enough to catch of glimpse of her closed eyes and button nose.
The lady smiled at my sigh and before I knew it, we were talking. She was holding her four-day-old granddaughter, and it was that perfect newborn who was there to see the orthopedic specialist. The grandmother's face was peaceful and loving. The nurse called her next before we could talk more.
And the day went on.
Pediatric clinics are places of very mixed emotions. I was compelled to smile at a precious little girl with down-syndrome as she giggled through ten verses of "Old McDonald" while simultaneously understanding the strained patience of her tired-looking mother. A young boy wiggled in his seat as he waited to have his broken arm casted--a bundle of pain and nervous energy. The receptionist tried to smile and apologize as a family complained about a delay.
Suddenly, Micaela's ankles did not seem like the grand catastrophe I have created them to be. God woke me out of my silly feeling of solitude. He reminded me that I never have the right to withdraw my love from those around me, no matter what I am going through. I should never be focusing on how much I need someone to smile at me or reassure me, instead I should open my heart.
Micaela and I left the clinic with great news about her muscle control and development and we got her casted for braces. I am pleased with the day, but I was surprised at the lesson God handed to me. I had no idea my heart had been so closed off. I have been allowing my own problems to hide God's light from others.
So, I take a deep breath and ask God to open my eyes and my heart so that next time I am ready to be full of His love.
Goodness, but the world is full of pain, isn't it? Yet we, with God's strength, can bring light, hope, and love to the world.
I have come into the world as a light, so that no one who believes in me should stay in darkness.