There are reasons I haven’t posted in several weeks. They include:
– Miranda being hospitalized overnight for dehydration. Talk about a perspective check! Even though I knew she was going to be fine, spending a night with my baby crying for a drink and not being able to give one to her… it makes me see a lot of things a lot more clearly.
– Seeing clearly is a good thing, because last week my family suffered a blow that I’m not sure I can blog about publicly yet. I will say that someone we loved has passed away, and we were not reconciled with this person, and essentially, the passing has brought about opportunity for others involved to remind us just how “un-reconciled” we are. Yeah… Even so, I have had such amazing peace in the last seven days that once again, my faith in the Lord’s goodness and grace has been completely strengthened. He has brought to my heart and to the forefront of my mind (which has been quite the battleground since this happened) one simple and amazing truth: He does not always give us what we want, but He always, always gives us what we need.
– During the week in between Miranda’s hospital stay and the death in the family, Rod and I were terribly sick. Turned out I had a sinus and throat infection and bronchitis, and he had a sinus, throat, and ear infection. Because we both waited far too long to go to the doctor, we spent several restless nights and challenging days because, as you know, we can’t always just stop the world and crawl into bed when we feel bad. Miranda was still quite ill and not herself and therefore in need of “MAMA!,” and her little sister Kaity, who thankfully did not get sick, is still only 5 months old and kind of needs me, too. All of this was an exercise in patience and humility. Sometimes, we make bad decisions, and sometimes, we need help.
I’m not sure whether a bad decision was made or not, but if you are another “road family” reading this, you’ll know what I mean. The night after Miranda came out of the hospital, Rod had a local concert, and then we were to leave for a Sunday morning service about 3 hours from home. My parents offered to keep Miranda with them, and I considered staying home with her, but she was keeping food down and we have the ‘comforts of home’ on the bus, so we decided it would be OK to take her. I simply told Paige, whose current season of life is “summer/teenager/sleep until noon” that she needed to stay up with her dad and Kaity so I could get some rest once Miranda fell asleep.
Three hours on the road is really no big. But that night? Oh, that night it was. I was just starting to feel ill with a very sore throat and lack of sleep. After everyone had eaten, I took Miranda in the back for “night-night.” And she began to cough. And cough. And she coughed so much that she started to, well, vomit. It wasn’t a lot, but it was enough to scare the fire out of someone who’d just watched her for almost 24 hours with an I.V. sticking out of her. My throat hurt badly enough that I couldn’t yell up to the front for Rod to pull over, but I really, really started to doubt our choice of taking her out of town. I could hear our dear pediatrician’s voice in my head asking me if I was CRAZY (and trust me, he is NOT a panicky type). Finally, I did get her calmed down, cleaned up, and asleep. And then I fell asleep myself.
I woke up to the sound of asteroids pelting the metal covering the top of the bus. OK, it was just rain. But wow! – that sound sure seems like something more powerful than water falling from the sky. It was raining hard, and Miranda was sleeping hard. I compared the time on my cell phone to the time the GPS unit had shown we would get to our destination (Joy, IL. Insert irony reference here) and saw we didn’t have long. And then I lay there awake and watched through the windshield what Rod was maneuvering through. It was very dark (as in lack of streetlights), the rain was coming down hard, and we were winding a LOT. I knew I couldn’t do anything to help in the front, so I stayed right there next to Miranda and I prayed, Hard!
It was well over an hour later when Rod parked and began shutting things down. It was only after everyone got settled in their own beds that he told me just how tumultuous of a drive it had been: winding roads, high winds and strong rain, low visibility, and worst of all, no place to turn around or pull over a forty foot long vehicle. Discouragement began to creep into us both as we questioned our decisions, the state of our ‘road babies,’ and life as a traveling ministry family.
Sometimes, it feels like we just don’t know what we’re doing.
And right after those times, it seems God’s love to us is always the sweetest.
We had a wonderful service in Joy, IL the next morning. And our time this past weekend, at the Northern Gospel Singing Convention and then at Calvary Assembly, both in Marion, IN, were wonderful experiences. I know I was blessed and ministered to by the anointing in the music and those who share it, including my husband. I can also say that Miranda did just fine on that trip, and we all have since responded well to our antibiotics and are back in true Burton (/Capriotti) fighting form.
There are certainly some circumstances I could have lived without these past few weeks, but there have also been some invaluable lessons learned and re-learned. The most important one: Don’t ever stop leaning on Jesus. He knows what He is doing. And while He doesn’t always make it easy, doesn’t always give us what we want, He always, always gives us what we need.