Yesterday, I was sitting at the bank taking care of unfortunate business and it was our nurse’s day off so I had Superman running around with me. Banks, also not his favorite place to be. But the woman and I started a conversation about none other than Superman. She asked me the one question that makes me cringe right out of my chair: So is he ever going to get better and be just fine? Please, I encourage you, if you meet a parent of a child in a wheelchair, especially if she just told you he has brain damage, please don’t use the words just fine in a sentence. It makes us cringe. But regardless, I smiled and explained that no, unless drastic measures are taken this is what his life is like. And with a smile on my face.
But the next statement is what got me thinking. He’s such a miracle. This is of course not the first time I have heard it and I have even said it myself numerous times. But it hit me yesterday that he is NOT a miracle…. yet.
He is a product of faith.
In the first moments after that bleed, he became a small miracle. He was in the presence of doctors in a medical facility that had the capabilities to sustain his life. That day I had to put my faith in medicine and believe that we were where God needed us to be to set us on this journey. Now, of course I didn’t see it that way at all at the time. I cursed God to everyone that would listen. Including my mother-in-law who I remember saying some very horrible things to about ‘her God’. Lucky for me, after having a baby at 27 weeks from a horrible emergency cesarean you get a little leeway to be hormonal and crazy.
But since that moment, our lives have been driven by faith despite the fact that we didn’t feel that way at times. He was never supposed to live, he did. He wasn’t supposed to leave the hospital – and certainly not with the ability to breathe on his own – he did. He was supposed to be in a persistent vegetative state (I hate that word but its the only one that describes it) – but he’s not.
From that moment that he grasped my finger and told me he would fight, I had to step out in faith that things would work the way they were supposed to. We have been faced with great challenges. Not just small challenges, but life changing challenges. You have two choices in that situation – you can crumble in fear and doubt or you can look it in the eye and have faith that miracles can happen.
One of the first sermons I ever heard at our current church is that in order to experience a miracle, you have to have a problem. Miracles don’t just happen when there is nothing wrong – because in that case you don’t need a miracle. But the bigger the problem, the bigger the miracles. So we live in faith that there could be some HUGE miracles coming our way!
So while we had our small miracle that he was able to survive birth, he is not a miracle yet. He is a miracle in the making – as long as we continue to live in faith that this is where he needs to be. We are stepping out in faith to see where the miracles lie. Stem cells are a product of medicine but unlike setting a bone or performing a complex surgery – medicine stops at the injection – from that moment forward you live in faith and hope that the cells will become what your child needs them to be and that’s when the miracles start.
Despite anything that happens, Superman has brought so much into our lives: a level of compassion for others we never knew existed, and a renewal of our faith – not only in God, but in each other and others.
He has taught us the true meaning of Faith, Hope and Love.