Your entry into this world was not as I expected.

It was not as I envisioned.

I never anticipated a crisis.

I never thought you’d be rushed into the hands of medical professionals.

I never anticipated the helplessness.

I never thought I’d find myself standing behind a circle of doctors, looking on with worry as they examined your tiny body, sticking and poking you.

I never anticipated the scrutiny.

I never thought my way of life, my way of mothering would be dissected, questioned, and judged like it was.

I never anticipated the shame and guilt.

I never thought I’d feel anything other than joy as I recounted the details of your birth, but instead, I was made to feel as though I had done things wrong.

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I never anticipated the panic.

I never thought my eyes would be glued to the numerous machines attached to your body and that the sounds would cause my heart rate to rise and my body to sweat.

I never anticipated the confusion.

I never thought I’d be clueless to a slew of words, of medical terminology concerning your very survival.

I never anticipated the flood of emotions.

I never thought I’d feel such a paralyzing numbness and an indescribable pit in my stomach that made me physically ill.

I never anticipated the separation.

I never thought you’d be anywhere but in my arms, surely not behind a plexiglass barrier.

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I never anticipated the release.

I never anticipated letting go of my hopes and dreams for us and being left to trust another as we moved forward.

No, sweet one, your entry into this world was not as I had expected. It was not as I envisioned.

And yet, this is your story.

This is our story.

So instead of being resentful, instead of wishing for different circumstances, I am choosing to trust God.

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I am choosing to trust that He sees the whole picture, that He has plans to prosper us and not to harm us, and that He is always working things together for our good.

And sweet child, clinging to His promises has made all the difference for us both. We have learned of humility, grace, and mercy. We have learned that we are the work of His hands. We have learned that through it all, He is faithful. And for that, I am grateful.

Originally published on the author’s Facebook page

Jessika Sanders

A former educator and cheerleader, Jessika has always found joy in helping and encouraging others. With vulnerability and authenticity, she writes about journeying through the desert seasons of life and points her readers to the unfailing word of God. She is also the Founder of the "Praying Through the NICU" ministry, created after her son's NICU experience. Follow her at www.piecesofjessika.com