A Grandmother’s Story: In the Beginning

You think as a parent you are prepared but you never are. You wish you can take the burdens of your children but you can’t.

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Today is Grandparent’s Day. I thought we’d take a moment to hear from my mom, Liza. She shares with us in the first part of her story how she learned about Emmett, her first grandson. We hope to hear from her more in the future and learn more about our special mother-daughter bond. ~Christina

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Image from Amazon

Every morning before scurrying off to work, I take a moment of reflection and read my Bible and a page from a short devotional book. Since the beginning of the year, I was reading a book by Sarah Young called “Jesus Calling”, a 365 Day devotional. I was interested in reading this book due to Sean Lowe’s testimony during his stint as “The Bachelor”. Yes, believe it or not, this show really influenced my reading selection.

I’ll share a short excerpt of what I read the day that changed my life because it was and still is incredible how it prepared me for the trials ahead and still to come.

“I am the resurrection and the Life”; all lasting Life emanates from Me. People search for life for many wrong ways; chasing after fleeting pleasures, accumulating possessions and wealth, trying to deny the inevitable effects of aging…As you come to Me and take my yoke upon you, I fill you with My very Life. This is how I choose to live in the world and accomplish My purposes. The Joy is Mine, and the Glory is Mine, but I bestow them on you as you live in my Presence, inviting me to live fully in you. ‘Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies.” (John 11:25), Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. (Matt 11:28-29)”

I will never forget the day I read this, it was Tuesday, March 2, 2016. This was significant because this was the day Chrissy would tell me that I would be a grandmother. I was happy for her and Brett. Chrissy and I share a very unique and special relationship but despite all that has happened in our lives, we’ve always managed to come through any obstacles, good or bad, through distance and separations, stronger and better but always filled with support, admiration and love for each other.

You always think in your mind as a parent, you are prepared for most things in life. To have some sense of knowledge from past experiences that you can draw from to provide examples to the questions children ask. But I didn’t have a clue! All I had was my faith in Christ to know, that He would take my yoke, my burdens. Trusting and growing my faith in Him. My faith would be tested in the weeks to come during Chrissy’s pregnancy.

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Hearing the good news that my first grandchild was on the way, I was so excited in shopping for items a mother and a new baby would need. Yes, a new baby, what a great reason to shop, right? It didn’t take long before I had viewed their baby registration online and ordered a Fisher-Price Cradle n’ Swing and a baby bouncer. That was March 17th. I really wanted to be the first to send them their first baby item. A grandmother’s dream. Crazy that I can remember the date.

March 30th, is another significant date. Chrissy texted me her ultrasound photo of my grandchild. I was elated to see it but the “happy feeling” quickly dissipated into sadness. She shared of the baby’s diagnosis, cystic hygroma and fetal hydrops. I had never heard of it. How could this happen and why could this happen to my daughter.

Have you ever had a moment, when you are left speechless? I learned, in retrospect, that silence is okay, rather than fumbling your words. As I said earlier, you think as a parent you are prepared but you never are. You wish you can take the burdens of your children but you can’t. You think you know what to say, but you never do. How do you tell your child who has longed to be a mother that “everything will be okay”, when you don’t know yourself? But all you can do is listen, be empathetic and supportive. Doing this 2, 987 miles away was so difficult, when all you want to do is hold your child, wipe their tears or perhaps make supper for them. Anything, I thought.

On April 22nd around 12:30 p.m. Pacific time, I received a text from Chrissy at work that the pregnancy was still not progressing well and, in fact, the recent tests confirmed our greatest fear–the decision to terminate the pregnancy. Needless to say, I was shocked, disappointed, confused, fearful, helpless…it seemed I went through several emotions inside in seconds. I couldn’t wrap my mind on “why”, “what happened”, “why my daughter”? And yes, I questioned God. Why?

As devastating and difficult to hear the news, I couldn’t help but feel the sadness over the phone and hearing her voice. She tried to do her best to sound positive but every mother knows when your kid is going through a trial, you want nothing more than to be with them. So, appreciate every moment with family and friends. And if your adult child needs your help, consider it a blessing despite the circumstances. As for me, I quickly knew that I had to be with her and Brett. I headed out on April 24th on a red eye that seemed to be the longest airplane ride that I had ever been on……..Food for thought:

“You were born with the ability to change someone’s life, don’t ever waste it!”

 To be continued…

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