Eight years ago my mom was admitted into the hospital because she was in agonizing pain and slowly losing the use of her hands and feet.
And the doctors couldn't figure out why.
For two weeks her body deteriorated, until she could no longer walk or use her left hand.
At the time, my oldest daughter was only three weeks old. Every day of my maternity leave I took my baby to the hospital, where we sat with my mom and watched her body stop working. It was one of the scariest times of my life.
My mom is one of my best friends. To be a brand new mommy myself, with an infant in my arms, the last thing I wanted was to lose my mom. She was only forty-nine years old.
Two weeks after she entered the hospital, they were able to diagnose her disease. Vasculitis. Looking back, it should have been an obvious diagnosis, but for whatever reason, it took them two weeks to figure out.
She left the hospital in a wheelchair. For six months I spent every spare moment I could with her. I was a chauffeur, a chef, a housekeeper and a companion. And all the while, I was scared and I doubted God.
I was relying on my own understandings and I was miserable. There was no peace in my life. Instead of my mom helping me, I was helping her. Instead of my mom pushing my daughter's stroller, I was pushing her wheelchair. Instead of making meals for me, I was making meals for her.
I didn't resent helping her, on the contrary, I wouldn't have wanted to be anywhere else. I was so afraid I would lose her, so I held on to her as tight as I could. I begged God to spare my mom and restore her health.
Then, ever so slowly and surely, I watched as God performed a miracle right before my eyes.
One year after my mom was in the hospital - six months after she left the wheelchair - my mom was with us in the Black Hills of South Dakota, on a bike ride, making memories with my daughter.
Her body has healed miraculously. It's been a long process, and she still has residual pain and some numbing in her feet, but she is active, healthy and strong.
Three years after she came out of the wheelchair, my mom was elected the mayor of our town. She's now in her second term as mayor.
|My mom, as the Mayor, officially welcoming|
soldiers back home from Iraq
And today, eight years after she was hospitalized, my mom has welcomed five more grandchildren into our growing extended family. They love having sleepovers at Nana's house. They love baking cookies, having tea parties, going camping and playing games with her. They are making memories every day.
|Christmas Tea at Nana's House with nine of her|
eleven grandbabies, my two sister-in-laws and me
|My oldest daughter with her Nana|
I look back at those days in the hospital and I'm reminded of the fear I felt. Yes, it was scary, and I had every reason to be concerned - but in the end, God taught me the most important lesson in my life - one that I'm still learning: He is in control and I will never have a reason to doubt His plan. Even if He would have chosen to take my mom eight years ago, He would have done it for a purpose - one that I could trust.
While my mom was in the hospital, I relied on my own understandings and I was afraid, which brought on stress and sickness in my own body. But now, when I choose to trust God, there is a peace that fills my heart and transcends all earthly understanding. I'm left with assurance that He's in control - He has a plan and a purpose for everything - and I have nothing to fear.
God did more than just heal my mom. He taught my entire family, and a community, the importance of trusting Him.
What about you? Do you have trouble trusting Him and relying on your own understanding?