October 31, 2015

Day 30: Baggage, Lunch & Dinner

After the emotional roller coaster I have been on the past few days, I evened out a bit for Day 30, which was nice because I had activities and kindnesses from morning till night. 

I finished most of the children's beards. (Simply being able to read that sentence is a kindness to you, is it not?) I delivered the beards and costumes to school along with a special lunch for Harper's teacher. We have had a lot of struggles with this little guy, and having our family in her class her first year of teaching, is quite an undertaking. She is doing a phenomenal job with him and I have complete trust and confidence in her ability to handle his unique situation while he is at school.

Scarcely is my concern for Harper not front and center in my mind, so having it in the back of my mind for a few hours while he is in her care is an unbelievable relief to me. This gift is something that only a parent of a child with a severe emotional disability could fully appreciate. So, she gets her favorite lunch. 

 And one priceless selfie with Dopey.

As you can see, I arrived at school dressed in full costume, which I consider an act of kindness to all the other mothers since my looking like a total idiot exponentially increases the cool factor for anyone in my immediate vicinity. I brought apples for London's class and volunteered to help with their costume parade. 

 For my final #AdamsActs for Day 30, we delivered more lifesaver/thank you cards for the NICU nurses and also made dinner for Pat and Megan who spend such long days at the NICU with their girls that they should not have to worry about mundane details, like making dinner.

I forgot to take a picture of my dinner, but this is basically what it looked like. 

I want to thank any and all of you who have inquired about and prayed for these two little warrior girls in the NICU. They are doing awesome in so many ways, and have recently joined the four pound club! Being born at 27 weeks around two pounds a piece means this is a huge victory for them. It also shows how far they still have to go, so I beg you all to continue praying for their growth, strength and development. And for Pat and Megan's endurance and peace during this time. Also, maybe pray that you can be friends with them someday, because they are that great, and you're missing out. 

We ended Day 30 with one of our favorite families who came over for dinner, which was a kindness to myself really. One of the things I shared last night with my friend Courtney, is the shift that has taken place for me in October as a result of #AdamsActs. I used to go into October with a private grief, and blogging through it and doing acts of kindness helped me to externalize my grief in a more productive, life-giving way. What I did not expect, was how this would free others to share their private grief with me. 

Over the past four years, countless people have shared with me their deep, personal losses and griefs. I have heard from so many of you about the stages of grief from losing a parent, a sibling, or worse... a child. Many have shared their private grief over the struggle to conceive a child. I have opened message after message about miscarriage and baby loss, and divorce and death and long battles with Alzheimer's or cancer or ALS. Some have shared their childhood memories of a life in foster care, some of you have shared their experience parenting a child with Reactive Attachment Disorder/Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder, and a few of you have shred your stories of having these disorders.

In an effort to no longer carry my own grief privately and alone, I found myself with the holy burden of helping some of you carry some of yours. I do not take this privilege lightly. And I thank you for the honor of doing life with you in this one, small way. 

My sister's bff, Karen, recently shared an article about how dismissive it is to say to someone hurting that "everything happens for a reason." 

In the article it said

"Losing a child cannot be fixed. Being diagnosed with a debilitating illness cannot be fixed. Facing the betrayal of your closest confidante cannot be fixed. They can only be carried."

For the past four years, all of you have helped me carry my pain. And in an unexpected turn of events, I have had the intimate and devastating honor of carrying yours. 

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