We are quite busy in our home. It doesn’t seem like there’s much down time, but it’s the way I need it to be. When I was about five months pregnant with McKinley we got a letter that our children’s school would be closing. Up until this point I felt that my husband and I had done a good job protecting our children. How can you help your child though when a Bishop decides that he no longer wants to keep a school open?? I could see the sadness on everyone’s face. In just a few short months we would no longer be part of our school family. Along with others we tried to fight the closure, but we had no control. No matter what we did or said the school would close. Just a few months later we gave birth to our daughter. Once again we would feel that same lack of control. No matter how much we loved McKinley and wanted her she would not be able to stay with us. If there was anything we could have done we would have. We had no options though. No choices. The decision was already made and we had no control.
Fast forward to 2.5 years later. One of my daily struggles is still with control. I know from life experiences that we can’t determine the outcome of everything so I control whatever I can. I’m not saying my house is always perfect (far from it), but when I see that coat laying on the floor or the mail on the counter it drives me crazy. When my children don’t want to do homework or they don’t follow directions I go into “mean mommy” mode. My patience just isn’t the same. I need to have control now because 2.5 years ago I didn’t . We lost our daughter. Our other two children, that we wanted to protect, lost their sister. And then, just a month later, they lost their school. It felt like in a moment our whole life as we knew it changed.
The choices we make in life reflect who we are. But what about when we don’t get those choices? What about when a higher power makes the decision for us and we don’t have the choice to control our destiny? I often wonder why we were so lucky and got to meet McKinley. She had Trisomy 13. Most pregnancies will end in a miscarriage or stillbirth. When it first happened I wondered if it would have been easier to lose her earlier on. To not meet her. I quickly came to the realization though that those five days will live in our hearts forever- both the happiness and the sadness. I read the messages we receive for the gift requests and the one recurring theme is how much love we all feel for our children. I believe that you all are proof of how much a parent loves their child from conception (and even before). It doesn’t matter if the pregnancy only lasts one day. In that day you become a parent to that child and you realize the love for a child is overwhelming.
I’ve learned that control is important. I’ve also learned that I am not able to control everything. When the unthinkable happens or we have a day that it is hard to get out of bed or we don’t know how to go on we need to put it in someone else’s hand. Whether that person is the God you believe in, a friend or family member or someone that you trust. Sometimes we just need to let go. I’d like to say that as I look at the pile of laundry or the reports I need to finish for work I’ll feel no stress. I know I will though. And you know what? It’s OK. I might need control in some things, but I’ve also learned that for some things it’s out of my hands.