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Have I done enough?


I am always asking myself this question. Sometimes I even answer!


Life in our home has always required a constant reevaluation of commitments and goals. You may know of this routine. You promise your kids that you will attend all of their games, choir concerts, band competitions, orchestra concerts, horse shows, gymnastic meets, swim meets, church events, recital programs, and the parent meetings that go with each of these activities. But in reality, you may miss many.


When I asked my now adult kids how they felt about the many things that I missed as we were caring for Robert, all of them graciously said that they knew we had to miss some things, but that it did not stunt them in any way. Wow!


As parents, our goals are almost always focused on affecting how our children grow. To “stunt” them would have meant that I had “prevented (them) from growing or developing properly.” That would have been my worst nightmare.


Where would I measure on the parent success chart for Robert? Was my special, disabled son feeling the same way? I think as you raise a very medically dependent child, you are always asking how well you are doing. Some of the questions repeat themselves daily.


Did you go to see the correct medical specialist? Was the therapist really the best one for your child? Is the new medication really the best one to treat these newest symptoms? Is that new medical equipment necessary…and will the medical insurance cover most of it? (Crucial) Should you get him a few play dates with other children, or would that be a nightmare? Is the in-home medical staff treating him with love and expertise? Seriously, I bet you can add a few hundred questions of your own.


Have I done enough? Did I do enough? He is no longer here, so did I do enough? Immediately following his passing in my arms, I questioned each last second of his life. So many mind games. In the late hours of that day, I still wondered. But, I now know that I did do enough.


Honestly, it has taken a few years to settle my mind to this fact. After all, we now know that sweet Robert should have only been on this earth for a few years. And I believe that because he was incredibly loved and had caring medical professionals that walked us through every step, his life was full and long for his medical prognosis.


You will do enough, and you have done enough. Trust your heart. These special little humans are like any other child in their ability to feel the love we give. I really believe that Robert knew that we had done enough.


Oh, to share this with every parent: You are enough.


Listening Library: “Three” Sleeping At Last - Atlas: Enneagram (Ryan O’Neal)


“But He said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’”

(2 Corinthians 12:9 NIV)



Three


Maybe I've done enough And your golden child grew up Maybe this trophy isn't real love And with or without it I'm good enough

Maybe I've done enough

Finally catching up For the first time I see an image of my brokenness Utterly worthy of love

Maybe I've done enough

And I finally see myself Through the eyes of no one else It's so exhausting on this silver screen Where I play the role of anyone but me

And I finally see myself Unabridged and overwhelmed A mess of a story I'm ashamed to tell But I'm slowly learning how to break this spell

And I finally see myself

Now I only want what's real To let my heart feel what it feels Gold, silver, or bronze hold no value here Where work and rest are equally revered

I only want what's real I set aside the highlight reel And leave my greatest failures on display with an asterisk

Worthy of love anyway


Songwriter: Ryan O'Neal

© Copyright Sleeping At Last 2016




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Jon Dunn
Jon Dunn
14 May 2021

Your post spoke to me. I can relate because I have settled that issue for my daughter Julie who had severe ADHD from birth through high school graduation. Sometime in her Junior High years it was diagnosed as Asbergers Syndrome. Thanks to God using Susan and me (mostly Susan) and more importantly God's miracles (only 5% grow out of it) Julie is happily married, has three children and is a Master Sargent in the Air Force. The jury is still out for me as it relates to my darling wife of 47 years. Susan has been battling dementia for the last 6+ years. After her diagnosis I took care of her for 4+ years but the last 2+ yea…

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Juli Henderson
Juli Henderson
14 May 2021
Şu kişiye cevap veriliyor:

Thank you, Jon. What you write is very relatable for so many. Sometimes there is "success" for one and not another. God only knows the reasons. However, please know that others share your journey, and will now know that they are not alone. Your willingness to comment and be vulnerable shows courage. Chris and I appreciate all that you do to love and care for your family. Blessings & strength to you.

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liz
12 May 2021

Thank you for writing this and for this entire blog . Crying over here imagining him dying in your arms. Brutal. But then I think, oh, the impact Robert that has had on your family (and many outside of your walls) is so profound that I'm certain we won't fully grasp the extent of how the Lord used (and continues to use) the entire journey. The scars, much like the nails in Jesus' hands and feet, point back to a brutal (and equally beautiful) time where love was poured out on our behalf. Likewise, your scars point straight to Jesus, the Jesus who was sustaining...empowering... equipping... loving... drawing you close... pouring out in/through you... doing the impossible for years (when…

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Juli Henderson
Juli Henderson
12 May 2021
Şu kişiye cevap veriliyor:

Hi Liz. I had to stop everything today to really read your words. You said so beautifully what my intention was when I wrote this particular blog post. The "doing" and caring for others in our arms can only do so much, and then He does all the rest, giving us peace that we have done enough. Thank you for reading, crying, and sharing your heart with me.💜

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Heidi Breitschopf Lentz
Heidi Breitschopf Lentz
12 May 2021

I can relate to so much of what you write in your beautiful blog. I didnt have a special needs child but a special needs mother. Your words give me so much comfort. Thank you!

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Juli Henderson
Juli Henderson
12 May 2021
Şu kişiye cevap veriliyor:

Oh, Heidi. Thank you for these words. They are really meaningful to me. Whether it was my child or your mom, we all want to care well for our loved ones on this journey of life unexpected. I know personally that you did do enough and so much more for your precious mom. Take comfort, my sister.💗

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In Our Arms

LIFE UNEXPECTED
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