On My Knees

EmmaandMaxilumpThree and a half years ago I wrote about the pain of parenting, opting to keep the details of the medical decision private and write instead about the emotions was experiencing. In the end, the decision was made to move forward with a disruptive but mostly pain free treatment for our daughter’s medical issue. A year later the treatment was over, and I put the experience as far out of my mind as possible. We knew that the day would come when follow-up appointments would be necessary, and we anticipated one more round of far less extreme treatment before moving out of the woods of this particular health concern forever.

On Friday I was feeling stompy. You know that feeling, when your blood pressure is slightly elevated and you feel like using words with only four letters  and the tops of your ears feel warm.

What caused said stompiness? Human error + some wires and black duct tape. After trying to mitigate the foible fallout, I rushed off, late, to one of my daughter’s many follow-up appointments. The plan was to meet my husband and daughter at the doctor’s office, find out if it was time to move into phase 2 of the plan, and prepare to empty my pockets into the doctor’s bank account.

Twenty minutes later I was sitting in my car alone, sobbing and unable to move.

In an online world where nothing shared can ever truly be erased, these are incredibly dangerous waters. Writing is an unbelievably cathartic exercise for me, and I’ve many times seen the power of the shared experience, strangers connecting through a common experience played out in words on a screen. Part of me wanted only to bury my anxiety and grief in the dense carbohydrate goodness of a poppyseed bagel and the feels-like-home sweetness of homemade apple pie. I had two pieces. One with ice cream. Another part of me wanted to start walking and not stop until it had ended. All of it. I walked for an hour while worship music streamed through my ear buds. But the part of me that has always needed to write and share told me that I had no other choice but to come here.

The truth is that the decisions that I make with input from my husband – who defers always to me – and from specialists – who are likely to provide me with the personal hell that is choice – will impact my life far less than they will impact the life of my first true love, my daughter. Our children have to live with the decisions that we make for them from the moment that we choose to bring them into this world to the day that we send them out into the world on their own. I’ve agonized over many of these decisions, wanting to provide the best possible outcome for my children. Some were likely always without the potential for harm – Emma instead of Ellsworth. Broom Drive instead of Wickham. Dance class instead of field hockey. But this one. This one will be life-altering, painful, with ramifications that are simply more than I want to digest at the moment, even with the help of the most amazing apple pie.

The decision that we made three and a half years ago was made with the hope that we would never be here. And yet here we are. In my raging stompiness, I didn’t see it coming. I am leveled. Humbled. Brought to my knees.

I turn to the one place I am assured will provide me with the comfort that I seek, the words that hold the promises that someday all pain will cease, that even in our most excruciating parenting moments, we are far, far from alone.

Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with Thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

– Philippians 4:6-7



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  • I’m so sorry for whatever you’re going through. I can’t even imagine. What I do know is that you undoubtedly are making the best decisions for your daughter, which is all that you can do, besides being there for her. Which, you know, doesn’t really tell you anything you don’t already know. But since I’m not there to give you a hug…

  • oh Amy. No matter the situation, I truly do believe that our mighty God will give you the answers you seek, comfort, wisdom, and perseverance to get you through what your family is dealing with. I’ll pray for y’all!

  • I’m so sorry, Amy. Praying.

  • Sweet girl. I’m so sorry your family is going through this. May God comfort you at this tune and give you incredible knowledge that He can only provide!!

  • Oh my friend. I can feel your heartbreak through my screen. We obviously have no idea what you’re dealing with, but your friends are here for you. Feel free to lean on us.

  • I’m so sorry you have to face this road with your daughter, whatever it is. Praying for your peace and comfort. xx

  • Oh Amy… My heart hurts for you and your girl. Sending you all kinds of love and prayers… Hoping you get the guidance you need to make the right decisions… Wishing you strength.

  • Oh, sweetheart, I’m so sorry for whatever’s happening. Many prayers and well wishes being beamed your way <3

  • Oh Amy, parenting is indeed hard and at times gut wrenching and heart breaking. We all doubt ourselves. I will pray for you and hope you find peace and comfort in the decisions you’ve made. I am positive you’re doing your very best and that’s all you can do. I am not sure what it is you have been facing but you and your family are in my thoughts and prayers. Hugs to you!!

  • Oh Amy, I’m pouring out my prayers for you right now. I’m so sorry.

  • Amy, sending love, sending prayers. Wishing you and Emma and the family all the strength you need, and a million times more. Know that we’re here for you always.

  • Praying for strength and wisdom as you face fear and uncertainty. No matter what happens God is with you and wants to hear every spoken and unspoken word from your heart. Praying for the peace that passes all understanding for you and your daughter.

  • Cindy Brooks

    I can hear your deep pain coming through your words. You will make the best decision you can for your daughter and no one will ever ask for or expect more. Praying for you and your family, that God will give you the strength and direction you need. Hugs to you…

  • An outpouring of love … the decisions are not taken lightly, they are treated in thought and love and prayer … and trust. Trust in Him always xxx

  • Amy….I too can feel the pain as I read your words…I can also feel how intensely you love your daughter and I know that you have and will continue to make the best decisions for her…praying for the kind of peace and comfort that only HE can provide.

    • Sorry I didn’t see that it included my link…so odd! Please delete it! : )

  • Oh, Amy…… My heart and my prayers are with you. Stay strong. Stay with faith. Xo

  • Oh my friend. I am praying on my knees with you. I love you and I know you’ll make the best decisions possible for your little loves.

  • It’s so hard being mom and making these decisions. Trust in the knowledge that you are making the best choice for the long term, no matter how painful they feel now. Thinking of you and your family.

  • Those decisions that affect the ones we love are ten times harder than the ones we make for ourselves. Praying you receive the guidance you need and the peace to know in your heart that you made the best decision you could.

  • Janet

    <> to you, Amy. if this decision is one that doesn’t need to be made within, say, a 24-hour time period, but one that can be made within a 7-day time period, then consider seeking a second opinion if you think that will help. I have faith that you, your husband, and your daughter’s medical team will make the right decision when the time comes.

    • Janet

      “HUGS” should be inside those angle brackets. 🙂

  • Praying for you and your daughter, Amy. Know that God gave her to you because he knew that you are fully equipped to make these decisions and to give her all the love and support she needs. Trust in his decision to make you her mommy. He knows what he’s doing in these matters:-) Whatever you decide, you can live with the knowledge that you made it with love.

  • […] day, I asked if I could make a quick prayer request. I got him caught up as quickly as possible on my daughter’s health and the road we suddenly found ourselves on once again. My prayer request to him, my personal […]

  • I am so so sorry for your pain and what you ALL are going through. I have turned to that very same bible passage many a time. Praying for all of you right now.

  • Alea

    Praying for you & your family, Amy!!!

  • I am very much keeping you in my thoughts.