Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Dear Madison; National M&M Day

Dear Madio;

From conception you've been making impromptu, surprise parties.

I used to rock your older sister and think, "I'm not having my next baby until Morgan is in K-4, so that I can then devote and enjoy the same depth and quality of time with each baby."

Before Morgan's first birthday you were all, "Ba-BAM!" In an explosion of surprise you said, "Ready, or not, here I come!"

I had no clue! 

Due to a fibroid tumor in the way of natural childbirth, I was watched carefully throughout my pregnancy with you. They also scheduled your cesarean delivery two weeks earlier than the due date to avoid the threats the tumor presented. Between myself, the magical midwives, the highly trained doctors and nurses, we obviously had your surprises under control. 

We turned out to be no match for your stealth. A full eight weeks before you were scheduled (TWO WEEKS EARLY) you were all, "Ba-BAM!"

I had no clue!

I had to pop a pill and lay in bed for two whole months to tie you down. They said you needed more development time. (See? You never have been patient about development!) I didn't even need to check the time to know when it was time to take that anti-contraction pill. Within ten minutes of being past time, you would start shaking the rafters with contractions, "I'm Madison, and I'm raring to go!"

I had no clue! 

When you were born via cesarean delivery, the FIRST thing you heard outside the womb was a joke. My doctor was telling the joke about a man being caught by a bear in the woods unawares. He told the joke up until, "The man fell to his knees and..."
But he forgot the punchline! 
Through the anesthesia I groggily asked, "Are you kidding me?! You don't know the punchline?!"
Everybody laughed. 
I finished it for him, "The man dropped to his knees, closed his eyes and prayed, 'Oh, Lord, let this be a Christian bear!" And when he opened his eyes the bear was on his knees, praying, "Oh, Lord, for this food we are about to receive, may we be truly grateful."
The room erupted in laughter.
There you were. 
I fell back to sleep.
So, yeah...
Your need for humor should come as no surprise. You were born under the banner of laughter.
(Honestly, I don't remember every detail of this timeline. I was, after all, highly drugged.)

I had no clue.

You CONSTANTLY made noise. Even in your sleep you would hum. In your infant swing while staring out into space, you would hum. While playing alone with your toys, you would hum. It turned out you had a LOT to say, but we didn't know you were deaf in your right ear, and hard of hearing in your left ear. You weren't able to hear how to pronounce words. That humming; you were speaking as best you knew how. 

I had no clue. 

We started all kinds of hearing tests. First homemade ones. Then the professionals started checking you out. We didn't have much money, so a lot of students practiced and learned on you. Then we started speech therapy. It turns out you couldn't hear high frequency sounds, like "s," "t," or "d."

I had no clue. 

We met some really nice people because you couldn't hear. People who were intrigued by you and began testing more than your hearing, they wanted to test your intelligence. You scored off the charts.

I had no clue.

When you were six or seven years old you thought that when you grew up, you would grow out of deafness and into hearing. That's how everything else was working; people grew out of crawling into walking. People grew out of baby clothes into grown-up clothes. So it stood to reason that you would grow out of deafness into hearing like the grown-ups.

I had no clue.

That day you curled up into my lap and mourned. You sobbed. We both cried. I told you then, and would tell you each time you would cry about your inability to be "normal" that you didn't need the full capacity of those senses, God had use of your bodily-vessel for service in unique ways.

What I DID have a clue about was that since I didn't plan on your arrival, since I had done all I knew to do to NOT have a baby. It was so clear to me that you were mandated by God to live in this world for such a time as this. You know I don't blame everything on God. But you really, really surprised me. 
I had no clue.
You are God's "fault."

You're 6'5" now. You ALWAYS make a grand entrance. You are a walking, living surprise party. Anyone who knows you, knows one thing; Never expect the ordinary.

You surprise everyone with your appearance, just like you did me. Every person of every age of every ethnicity feels like you are their best friend. People going about their day, carrying chips on their shoulders, or hauling burdens in their heart.
And then, there you are!
Smiling and humming, "Hi!"

Your smile conveys the idea to them that they're not alone.
Your presence states, "I'm big enough to help you carry your burdens." 
Your deafness says to them, "Being imperfect is totally OK!" 
Your constant "humming," words we understand now, makes even the outcast to feel, "This person is interested in me."

We all have our place in this world, and yours is to be Christ's hands and feet, conveying to all humanity, "You are fearfully and wonderfully made."

I'm so thankful God knew better than my five-year-plan. Your existence goes beyond my careful plans. Your existence is due to God's ways, thoughts, and plans being higher than mine. Everything about you shows His handiwork. You will leave the palm of my hand someday, but you should cleave with all your being to His hand.

Here's at least one thing I'm not clueless about: He makes everything you touch a beautiful surprise party.


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