Thursday, January 25, 2007

Words ... the power to heal and also to hurt

What a journey this has been.  I've learned so much - about so many things.  I am thankful for the work that God is doing in my heart and in my life even though this isn't a path I would have chosen for myself.  I've learned more about the power of words - the healing effect of comfort and encouragment as well as the damaging effect of careless words.

I remember in the hospital the nurses telling me over and over what a beautiful daughter I had.  That gave me great encouragment and hope.  I knew that she looked different from other babies and wondered what the reaction of others would be to her (something I'm sure I'll continue to have to face as time goes on) and just hearing their thoughts on the beauty of my little girl was a sweet balm to my spirit.    

I've continued to appreciate the comments on what a cute baby we have - she really is cute!  I also have appreciated the people that said "congratulations" to us.  We do have a new daughter!  This isn't just a time of mourning.  I have mourned the loss of the dreams that I had and the new difficulties that we are and will have to experience.  We are thankful also for the blessing of a new child in our family!!!   We appreciate prayers and understanding that this is a time that isnt' easy.  I don't however just want "pity" as that hurts too - no matter how well intentioned. 

I have had sooooo many people reach out to me - family, friends and even strangers who are becoming friends.  I have felt God's hand and loving touch in so many of the words of encouragment that have been shared.  It's been something that helped tremendously as I  have been struggling with my own prayers and wondering if I'm being heard.  I know that I am being heard  - but the feelings aren't always there.  Being such an emotional time, feelings can seem overwhelming at times.

I have appreciated the words of others that tell us that we will find such joy in having Eliana in our family.  I appreciate the prayers for my family as we work to find a "new normal" for our lives.  I appreciate the prayers for my dear husband and I as we work to develop new ways to communicate and help support each other.

I have not appreciated comments telling me that I need to add anything more to my already full plate!  That just isn't what genuine love and compassion look like to me!  Thankfully this has just happened once thus far.  I hope that it gives me a greater sensitivity to the comments that I make to someone that is overwhelmed, hurting and doing the best that they can in a difficult situation.  Extending grace is such a beautiful way to show love.

I am so very thankful for the support my entire family has received.  It has truly been more than I could have imagined.  Thank you precious friends for being the hands of God to my family!

With love,