When my disabled son, Lucas, was an adorable little boy, I thought (and declared loudly!) that as long as I was alive and well, I would care for him. I was his mother and no one could ever provide for him as I would. And I completely believed this up until about five years ago.
It started with puberty as Lucas blossomed into manhood, shedding his adorableness, and my mental and physical health deteriorated as he grew larger and stronger and became aggressive at times. I whispered to my husband, late at night with tears streaming down my face after Lucas had pulled my hair or scratched my arms or lashed out at a sibling, “I don’t know if I can do this forever. I don’t know if I want to do this forever,” and those moments became the catalyst of God softening my heart toward a different reality.
Then the pandemic hit, and we were stuck at home forever and ever, and we made a documentary called Unseen: Caregiver Documentary that detailed just how bad it got (well, with the hard parts smoothed over for public viewing), and one day, as I was wrestling with God, and crying out, “Lord! I do trust you with my children! I just don’t know how to surrender Lucas to you! I’m his mom! No one will ever care for him or love him as I do! I need to make sure he’s safe forever! I need to control this situation! You understand, right?! He’s nonverbal and completely dependent on others for his care!”
And a still small voice replied, “If you don’t trust me with Lucas, then you have made caring for him your idol.”
The prodding continued, “You trust me with seven of your children. Trust also that I created Lucas and love him more than you could possibly imagine, and I will care for him, just as I care for your other children.”
And I slowly began to open myself up to the possibility that one day I would have to ultimately learn to entrust Lucas’s care to his Creator.
This is our story. I trust that you and the Lord will wrestle with your own story and your own unique path and just because this is the plan God laid out for us, doesn’t mean it’s the path for everyone.
I would, however, encourage mamas everywhere to allow themselves permission to change their minds.
Just because you promised your child something at five years old doesn’t mean it still applies when they’re 25. Pray, wrestle, cry out to God, and then surrender. He does love your child passionately and will command His angels concerning their care and yours.
These are hard and holy choices. Go toward the open doors and walk through them when you have a peace that passes understanding.