I didn’t do one of those “I’m Thankful for” posts for Thanksgiving this year. Mainly because I simply forgot. Last night we were driving home from the annual family white elephant party and we were listening to the radio station that plays Christmas Music 24/7. While listening to the beautiful music, I started to feel guilty for not making it to church the last few weekends. I’m not a “go to church every Sunday” type person, nor am I overly religious.
As I was listening to the music, which I believe was “Hark the Herald Angels” I began to realize that I love singing these “religious” Christmas songs, and I really only get to enjoy them on Christmas day, which is the one day we manage to make it to church this time of the year. And then, after that thought I realized that I’m taking things for granted with God. We have so much to be thankful for this season; mainly Jenelle's seizure control and that she found her laugh and smile. I’m not sure I could have survived another holiday without it.
Yesterday afternoon, we were at a birthday party for my best friend’s daughter who just turned 3. My best friend and I were pregnant together when I was pregnant with Jenelle, and it was difficult watching her daughter grow up normally while we were going through the struggles we were having with Jenelle. My best friend is a NICU nurse as is her sister-in-law, so they have been supportive and helpful, but still it’s hard to see what should have been in her daughter as compared to Jenelle because their age is so close. While the kids were watching her daughter open gifts yesterday, I had fun playing with Jenelle on the open floor making her giggle and laugh. And then it occurred to me that at this party a year ago, all I did was sit in a chair with Jenelle in my lap, counting the seizures she was having in my arms while the kids were watching the presents. I remember feeling every jerk of every petite seizure she had. I remember counting them in my head because I was afraid we were going to need to use Diastat to stop them, or worse a trip to the ER. In looking back in the archives, this was about the time we realized Lamictal was making her seizures worse. What a difference a year makes.
Since July, when Jenelle gained seizure control, this year has been so wonderful and enjoyable. Her personality is so adorable and outsiders almost feel connected to her for once. We almost feel like we have a somewhat “normal” life now with Jenelle. And I have taken that for granted.
I know that there are times that parents of children with Special Needs question or get angry with God, because I’ve had those moments too. I also realize that God has a plan for my daughter, and for my family along the way. But last night I realized that I am thankful to God for His gifts this year in my Jenelle. Does this mean I’m going to go to church next Sunday? Maybe. I also realize that good health is important, and I shouldn’t push myself too hard because being ill does my daughter no good. The extra sleep on Sunday might help keep me well. I do feel I have many things to be thankful to God for this season. And now that I realize it, I really wanted to share it with you, so I don’t take it for granted.