We go to speech therapy, and she won’t look at the lady making exaggerated O’s with her lips.
She won’t even look at me, my baby girl who is almost three and doesn’t say “Mama”.
I watch my hopes fall apart right in front of me as she refuses to acknowledge anyone in the room, pretends she can’t hear, frowns, focuses on the farm animals, whooshes them up in the air, silently, back down without a word, a sound.
Everything crumbles and I feel so empty. I hear not the sound the room is filled with–children coaxing, playing with their sister, the therapist talking and engaging Lilly, little farm gates opening and shutting, cows bumping up ladders–I hear the sheer volume of voicelessness. It feels the room and crushes me under the weight of it.
I really thought she would walk in, be pleased to meet her therapist, like normal children who engage their world do, and we would begin learning words.
This mama-heart aches as I watch my baby silently refuse the world all around her. I’m just a spectator in her
Somewhere along the way– between sitting on the foam mat, playing with horses and cows, and displaying sounds like candy in a jar we hope she’ll stick her hand in, and picking her up and carrying her out, soundlessly kicking my belly and thighs with her feet– it stuns like a tazer, that something is wrong. Horribly, can’t grasp air, mouth moving but no sound coming out nightmare wrong.
In my nightmare, I am mute, and in this real world, she is the one with the restraints on her mouth like a corset too tight, cutting off oxygen. And I can’t figure out what I did wrong, but I know it’s something I did very, very wrong along the way.
My heart thuds in my chest like a heavy gong and begins to move into my throat, to reverberate loudly, the beating of a drum in the dark, in the deep, that dread coming for me. It moves up, closer, tighter and squeezes, slowly cinching, until tiny bones bend and snap.
That dread, thudding, as I say it to myself: Is she autistic? Dear God. Has she just decided out of pure stubborness to be mute? Has something traumatic caused her to not articulate, to back far away into a corner, the musical notes of her voice disappearing?
Because the ma-ma’s and waving, her calling bye-bye–it’s all disappeared, blown away somewhere on the wind of all things in life that are lost, un-cared for, suppressed, inhibited, carelessly pushed down.
And what have I done to cause this?
Was it the hours and hours spent isolating myself, shutting myself away from my family when I was sick?
Was it all the times I let her go to bed without a story? Should I have read to her more? Loved her more? Held her, rocked her, talked to her more, looked straight in her eyes every. single. day, said I love you?
Have I let her get lost in a sea of siblings, feeling she doesn’t have a place, a voice?
As she lies in my arms, I hold her, and I pray.
I weep as I pray, and it comes out in broken whispers. Tears stream and I come to Him completely broken and in need.
Oh Jesus, let my baby talk.
Let her begin to talk.
Father, wrap us up in your love.
Restore what has been lost.
Restore what has been stolen.
Take this illness that has plagued her and I, and with those stripes you took for her and for me,
I pray healing over us.
Touch my little Lilly, Father, with your healing hands, those scarred hands.
Loose her mouth, Lord, set her free.
It’s broken hallelujahs around here, and as I wrap my arms around her in the dark, in this dreaded deep, I feel God wrap ’round us and hold us right where we are.
Forgive me for being sappy, friends, but two beautiful songs I’d like to share with you, would you like to listen and worship for a minute, in this quiet, in this deep, in this dread, in this place of broken hallelujah, worship anyway with me?……
And humbly asking for prayer, to be guarded with angels and His blood here on the doorpost, as the prowling lion seeks to devour. I feel His teeth sinking in as illness tries to suck me back down, as my Lilly struggles to talk, as she vomits off and on for the past few months and we can’t figure out why, as Husband and I walk through the hard places and ask God for healing in relationship….
This I found through Ms. Holly: Gorgeous, friends….
Linking up with The Nester, and all the other 31-Dayers.…This ought to be one wild, brave ride…
Do you struggle with fear of what doesn’t feel normal, when your life is turned upside down, friend? Please tell me your story? Have you seen God redeem these doubts, these concerns? Have you found grace? Your comments so encourage me. I draw strength from your kind words and knowing you were here. My faith walk is seasoned with the right ingredients when you hang around…
This is one post in a series of 31 days of Fear. You can find the entire 31 Day collective here. I have chosen to do this one on FEAR, because it seems to be something I keep wrestling with over and over, something that keeps me in chains, pins me down, won’t let me free. I hope you will come with me on this journey–to get a taste of glorious redemption as I soul-search and look for Jesus smack-dab in the middle of my fears. And Jesus sits with sinners. I won’t have to look very far.
Couldn’t we all use some freedom from those fear-chains that bind? I pray God gives me the strength and the courage to complete 31 days–y’all, it’s going to be hard on this ‘ol gal to write every.single.day. Pray for me?
Some other 31 Day collectives I’m loving: Shelly @ Redemptions Beauty, Amber Haines , and Lisa-Jo
And also linking up with Ann, Emily, Duane, Jennifer