I will be writing about Ethan on and off for the next few weeks ... this is why .....
My new blogging buddy, Amy, wrote a post this weekend about her journey with her son Spencer that moved me and caused me to remember. Amy and I are walking in similar shoes and after reading her post Saturday, I decided to tell you more about Ethan and what God has allowed to happen in our lives, not to garner sympathy, but to tell you about our journey and show you the goodness of God. He really does have our best interest at heart.
First this .......
Welcome to Holland - Emily Pearl Kingsley
I am often asked to describe the experience of raising a child with a disability - to try to help people who have not shared that unique experience to understand it, to imagine how it would feel. It's like this......
When you're going to have a baby, it's like planning a fabulous vacation trip - to Italy.You buy a bunch of guide books and make your wonderful plans. The Coliseum. The Michelangelo David. The gondolas in Venice. You may learn some handy phrases in Italian. It's all very exciting.
After months of eager anticipation, the day finally arrives. You pack your bags and off you go. Several hours later, the plane lands. The stewardess comes in and says, "Welcome to Holland.""Holland?!?" you say. "What do you mean Holland?? I signed up for Italy! I'm supposed to be in Italy. All my life I've dreamed of going to Italy.
"But there's been a change in the flight plan. They've landed in Holland and there you must stay.The important thing is that they haven't taken you to a horrible, disgusting, filthy place, full of pestilence, famine and disease. It's just a different place.
So you must go out and buy new guide books. And you must learn a whole new language. And you will meet a whole new group of people you would never have met.It's just a different place. It's slower-paced than Italy, less flashy than Italy. But after you've been there for a while and you catch your breath, you look around.... and you begin to notice that Holland has windmills....and Holland has tulips. Holland even has Rembrandts.
But everyone you know is busy coming and going from Italy... and they're all bragging about what a wonderful time they had there. And for the rest of your life, you will say "Yes, that's where I was supposed to go. That's what I had planned."And the pain of that will never, ever, ever, ever go away... because the loss of that dream is a very very significant loss.
But... if you spend your life mourning the fact that you didn't get to Italy, you may never be free to enjoy the very special, the very lovely things ... about Holland.
What a reminder to me. God didn't plan for me to go to Italy but to Holland. And He is my guide.His plans and the journey He takes us on are always better than the plans and journey we have in mind for ourselves.
Jeremiah 29:11For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.
Isaiah 55:9"As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.
Romans 8:28And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.
Emily Pearl Kingsley’s article has been widely circulated in support groups and medical circles.Please credit as follows: As published in “That All May Worship and Serve,” July, 2002, as published on the United Church of Christ Disabilities Ministries web site.
This is EXACTLY how I feel ... more on Ethan during the week.