There was a time when I followed the same certain walk to my work everyday. You can read about it here. The leaves are beginning to fall and school has resumed, my path is now a different one. Walking along the other day I began to ponder this and how life leads us in so many directions. Although this post has obvious analogous properties, it is quite real.
Wednesday I was driving along when I suddenly realized my close proximity to Kaiser and the subsequent need of little e’s kindergarten shots. My path suddenly took a turn and a few moments later our car sat nestled in a parking spot. Walking up to the clinic, with a huge grin e questions, “am I getting a shot?” You should know, there was little fear, this inquisition seemed pure jest. I thought carefully on how to respond, ultimately deciding honesty the best policy, “yes.” His demeanor changed almost immediately his body folding inward, the way it always does when he is truly hurt. Then it escalated to pure anger, running up and down the halls screaming, climbing the beam, hanging from the window, kicking, biting, totally not my e—
I think e has probably thrown three to four tantrums in his life, not his thing. He’s such a mellow child, the “go with the flow” type, so I knew him to be truly frightened. I thought back on our recent hospital stay (for a possible hip infection) and the IV’s and pokes which accompanied. To be so little, he’s getting bigger, but still the world is a vacuum and his little mind couldn’t escape those memories. It took two nurses and I to hold him down…when they were just about to poke him, his little eyes filled with tears, looking up at me, “Mama, mama, hold me, I’m so scared, hold me mama.” It was the fear of a child, yet at that second there seemed so much wisdom inside him. I put my face against his holding back my own tears. Up until that very moment feelings of exhaustion overwhelmed, pulling him from that window beam, I questioned, “why, is this so hard and I have to do it alone?” If only I had someone to support me in this moment of difficulty. Then pausing, with my face against his, an answer came, “you do have someone and he needs you to be strong, “YOU CAN DO HARD THINGS.”
We left the doctors office that day a closer mother and son. The path we took taught us both something. For e, he realized mama will always be there, and I saw how much e needs me. The experience reminded me very much of my life as a whole and the relationship between my Father in Heaven and I. It is not easy for him to deliver the struggles he is sometimes required to do, but nonetheless he knows they are necessary and required for our growth. Life isn’t always about being happy–sometimes it’s about fear, and hardship, struggle, and pain. All of these paths take us places we need to frequent, and offer us experiences and relationships vital to our growth and development as individuals.