On being forged into a warrior mom
If I could summarize our journey from Hell to HOPEISM, it would be in my faith, which I call HOPEISM. It has been my weapon of choice to get me through each battle I have had to fight in my mission to win our war called life with autism and seizures. Vaccine injury to be more specific. It would also be in committing to heart, soul, & mind the words and motto's from Forged, NDCQ, the Lone Survivor, and Levi Lusko in his book, "Through the Eyes of a Lion." I will be forever grateful to the inspiration, encouragement, and mental fortitude found through all of them collectively. Because of that, I am not allowing this tragedy of vaccine injury that has come into our lives to be an obstacle to being used by God. I am instead turning it into an opportunity to be used like never before!
This blog is dedicated to Brandon. His life has been forged by difficulty, obstacles, & all too often because of seizures - pain, blood, broken teeth, & broken bones. Yet through all that he has shown such fortitude. The bravery, strength, & resilience of a true warrior. He taught me that having strength through adversity means that even if you lose every battle, like the Lone Survivor, you never quit fighting until you win the war. That in the words of "NDCQ," you keep "dreaming," keep "daring," & keep "doing." As Team Guppy has yet to be able to escape vaccine injury, we have no choice but to as Levi Lusko writes, "Run toward the Roar." God has indeed given us such incredible power in enduring such impossible pain.
Some days the HOPEISM in that simply takes my breath away.
January 5, 2010
A new year lies before me -
Cleansed and forgiven are my sins through you.
Gone, are last year’s disappointments,
Before me, new opportunities to pursue.
Always near to comfort me -
Covering me like early morning dew.
To warm me through days of hardship,
To draw me back when I’ve drifted from you.
To focus on blessings that are many -
To get through any hardships with you.
To live renewed and refreshed with an attitude,
That resolves to see all things bright and new.
~ ~ ~
Each New Year I try and have a new theme and scripture to hold on to in the coming months. As the parent of a child with a disability – most of my time is focused on caring for him, as well as my family; and so I need to start each new year renewed and refreshed - with a scripture to hold on to.
January is my “sabbatical” month in a sense. A time of reflection over the past year, and a time to focus on the year ahead. A time to think about and anticipate what God has in store for me, my child, and my family.
Perhaps one of the greatest lessons I have learned the hard way, is that as busy as life gets and as the demands on my time tug away at me, - I still have to find time for myself so that I can have the energy and inspiration to take care of everyone else! You know the old saying, “If mamma ain’t happy….”
So each year after the Christmas tree is back in the attic, and everything is back in it’s place from the hectic holiday season, I take time to just listen to what I feel God saying to me for the New Year. And this year my thoughts kept centering around “All things bright and new.”
So I looked up scripture with the words “new” and found the following favorites:
“I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you.”
“He put a new song in my mouth, a hymm of Praise to our God.”
2 Corinthians 5:17
“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come.”
Those verses inspired me as I marked them in my Bible for those days in the coming months when I would most likely need a “new” perspective on things!
And as for the “bright,” – I kept recalling the brightness of the snow I remembered from my childhood. I was fortunate to have lived in states that actually had snow – and sometimes lots of it. And even though I now live in a state where most winters we have our air-conditioning on, and most folks here have never seen snow, - I still think of snow. Of waking up and looking out the window and seeing a fresh new layer of snow covering the yard.
Snow so bright that the glare from the sun shining down on it makes you have to squint!
In Isaiah it talks about God’s glory being brighter than the sun or moon – and I would further elaborate – the glare off the snow that I remember.
"Arise, shine, for your light has come, and the glory of the LORD rises upon you. See, darkness covers the earth and thick darkness is over the peoples, but the LORD rises upon you and his glory appears over you. Nations will come to your light, and kings to the brightness of your dawn."
I felt God saying to me that much like the old year has ended, so too should any sorrows I had left over from the past year. After all – my calendar for the new year was blank, so I too should start off the new year with a “clean slate” – a fresh, bright, new attitude for the year.
And so as I filed away that old calendar, I also resolved to do just that, file away any hurt or disappointment, and instead focus on the promise of Isaiah 60:19-21:
“The Lord will be your everlasting light, and your days of sorrow will end.”
For me, Isaiah 60 is about restoration, rebuilding, deliverance, and - “all things bright and new”. It’s about the dawning of a new day, a new year, and a new future where I allow God to illuminate my path, and my family’s path, in the year ahead.
It’s about embracing the brightness of the plans God has for us!
I am truly claiming this year and Isaiah 60, as my new dawn!
A new dawn of healing for my child, and as a new dawn of joy for my family.
As a young girl I would love to be the first one to make footprints in the snow – and on the way back – carefully follow in those same footsteps so as to not “mess up” the new snow….
As a Christian, wife, and mother, – my only New Year’s Resolution this year will be to follow in God’s footsteps so as to not “mess up” his plans for me by instead following in my own footsteps!
I want to simply focus my energy and prayers this year in allowing Him to illuminate my path so that I can fully realize the brightness of His glory!
And I think that if I can do that no matter what 2006 brings to my doorstep, - this will be a year of all things new, – and my future, my son’s, and my family’s, will be so bright – that indeed, we will all have to wear shades….
As in Psalm 40, I pray that you would put a new song in my mouth this year. A hymm of Praise for all that you have in store for me this year. Help me to position myself to truly hear and do your will. Instead of making resolutions that might never come to pass, help me to resolve to simply follow you. As in Isaiah, help me to see that you are my everlasting light and that your glory is upon me. When challenges come my way, give me the grace to not just endure them, but to rejoice in them knowing that your will is perfect whether I understand it or not. As I go through this New Year, instill in me a spirit of thanksgiving. Remind me to fill those blank pages of my calendar with praises and thankfulness for who you are and what you have done for me, my child, and my family.
In your name I pray,
~ ~ ~
Written my Michelle M. Guppy
Article first appeared in Winter issue of my "Life Lessons" Series through Special Education Today, A LifeWay magazine.