We recently enjoyed celebrating our daughter's 26th birthday. I thought it would be fun to put some old pictures in her birthday card, so I started looking at the photographs from when she was born. Oh my! Memories came flooding back to me about all of the stressful things that happened around her birth. I was hospitalized in my 7th month of pregnancy and the doctor decided that our daughter had to be delivered early. The same week she was born, my wonderful mother was diagnosed with advanced cancer. How was I going to take care of a premature baby and my dying mother who lived by herself in another state? How could my husband and I be so thrilled about becoming parents and at the same time so heartbroken about losing a parent? It was a perfect storm.
When I look at the picture of my mom, baby daughter and me, it appears that there is nothing more than the happiness of celebrating a new grandchild. However, we had plenty of stressful and sad feelings behind those smiles that no one would know about unless I shared my story. My mother had surgery two days after this picture was taken and died about 6 weeks later.
How did I manage to get through that challenging time? I know that God must have been with me because there was too much for me to endure without His help. I am prepared to share with others that they too will get through their challenge because they are not alone. I can offer this comfort having experienced God's strength in my time of crisis.