I have a very unusual relationship with my higher power. It's been one of suspicion, doubt, conformity and fear. Those that have had the pleasure of my opinions over time about religion may even feel like I don't have a relationship with God. Truth be told I have a solid one. I just don't have any faith or concern with religion as it's proven to not only build but destroy the goodness within each of us and with each other. I wish I had the desire to be in a church daily, weekly or whatever others choose - to learn and feel the love, but quite honestly I do that already. At any moment in time and in any place I can stop, breath deeply, hold my thoughts honestly,with much vulnerability and reach out to God. He is always there. It's not that I don't go to church, I'm just not a routine visitor that has to check it off my list and know that I was a good student that week. I attempt to do that daily with my interactions with myself and others. I go when I feel it in my heart to go and if that is where I am called in that moment. I made a covenant with God many years ago and I do my best to keep my end of the deal.
I was 23 years old, living in Dallas with a few friends. I was nine months pregnant with my third child. I had recently left their dad because I had found out he was cheating. I sent my two kids back to Waco to stay with my oldest brother and mother for a few weeks until the baby was born. I had never been without my kids before, but at this point there wasn't much of an option. Their dad stayed home and took care of them after school since he had lost his job from partying too much and calling in. My job was my only security and I couldn't risk losing it, especially with a baby coming. I've always prided myself in my work and keeping financially stable for my family. I wasn't going to let his lack of discretion ruin our lives so I made the choice to send them. It hurt me in ways that I cannot explain. I felt like a failure, but I knew it wouldn't be long until I was back on my feet.
The day came when I didn't feel so good and had one of my roommates take me to the hospital because "It Was Time". I was so nervous because I didn't want to do this alone. He promised he would be there,but the anxiety of not knowing crept in like cigarette smoke. I paged him. He showed up. He actually showed up! He was being a jerk and acted like it was bothering him and taking up his time, but he was there. Thank goodness! I was already hooked up and ready to go. The doctor comes in and we begin the process.
again and again
The doctor is maneuvering things around, nurses pushing on my stomach, I'm uncomfortable and in pain. Repeat it all again. Panic talk is starting to swirl.
The cord is around his neck
I can't get it off
I need to cut it
I can't get it off without cutting him
Cut it now!
I don't know what to do...I can't do anything. My ex gives me a funny stare and then suddenly the doctor looked at me, looked at my ex and with all the seriousness of the world, grabbed my hand and said "Gina, I need you to try your hardest, look at me, push as hard as you can. His head is out, I cut the cord around his neck off, but if you don't push I will have to break his shoulders or we will lose him!"
I want to cry...I can't! I want to scream...I can't! I am panicked.....oh my goodness... no...no....no!!!!! I can't lose this baby!!! This is my son....I can't lose him before I've even met him! NO!!!
All the memories of the fights we've had since I found out I was pregnant come rushing through my mind at full speed. This pregnancy wasn't planned. It happened while we were OFF in our Off/On relationship. I thought I had the flu and instead found out I was 3 months pregnant. No I didn't plan on being pregnant, but it was not a devastation. It was just complicated now. Three kids and a b/s relationship is not what I wanted for my life. During one of our fights I remember the both of us making comments about the baby dying inside me. It was the most disgusting thing I've ever said about my own child. It was said out of complete anger and hatred, thinking it would hurt each other-instead it set the stage for our reality that we were now faced with. Tears are rushing down my face. Those instant memories cut like a jagged knife in that moment. I felt the punishment. I felt God's voice letting me know that I am never in charge...he is and that if I was going to say things so vile that he has the ultimate power to oblige me. I was defeated. Yes, you are in charge!!! I prayed within as I pushed and just asked God to forgive me and please deliver my baby boy. In that very moment my baby boy Brian managed to slip through, but he was completely blue and purple. The entire staff of nurses and doctors were in the room trying to resuscitate him. Once they got him breathing they flashed him to me for a quick glance and left with him. I wasn't allowed to see him until the next day.
My ex mother-in-law showed up the next morning. My ex wasn't there. He decided to leave the hospital and go "celebrate" his son's birth by going out with friends. My feelings were so hurt. I was alone in Dallas without my family, my roommate had her own child to tend to and here I am with a mother-in-law that I didn't always see eye-to-eye with. They finally bring my little miracle and she got to hold him and smell his sweetness from heaven. It was her first grandson. When the doctor came in to check on me and take him back to the nursery, I asked when I could go home. She stated that they needed to test him for brain damage first. STOP!!!! What do you mean? I'm so confused...he is okay right? No. She informed us that we were not out of the woods and that his delivery came with a lot of unanswered questions including brain damage. I couldn't believe it. I'm so confused now. I thought he was okay??!!!!! I cried, she cried, we cried and cried and cried!!!! As much as I cringed when my mother-in-law would try to pray about everything, I welcomed it now!
Dear God-I hear you, I feel you, I understand....I am not in charge. I have a duty as one of your children to live the best life that I was intended to live...but only through you and nothing else. I understand I can no longer be selfish in my thinking, in my actions, in my negative thoughts, in my negative behavior towards others. It does not and will never matter how others treat me-even those that I love greatly and feel that I should receive that equivalent respect. It only matters in how I treat them and how I serve you in the process!!! That is all that will ever matter. I understand dear Lord. I understand! I promise to live a life that is of service to you and if it is your will that my son live a life with disabilities then I will accept that responsibility and love him without complaint.
This was my first covenant and I have recently been reminded of it. I am happy to report that my son passed all his test with flying colors and there was not even a small inkling of damage.
My promise heard, forgiveness given and responsibility being fulfilled...