There are many days I simply feel empty. I am unable to mentally or emotionally process any new information. The day has gotten my best with its dishes and laundry. And my family, well, they get the rest.

The leftovers.

The small piece of humanity that remains after changing diapers, administering meds, making phone calls, attending various therapies, and unloading backpacks after school.

This life of minethe one I prayed for and am so very grateful foris exhausting.

Most days, I drag myself to bed without washing my face.

I can almost hear the audible gasp from the women with flawless skin as I bare my unwashed soul.

But it is my reality.

My well is empty.

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Looming fear and anxiety exist in the corners of my rooms. They are present. 

Waiting for their time in the spotlight. Their time to shine. They remind me of the endless appointments, the hospital admissions, the scary diagnoses, and the general unknown that resides in this life of special needs parenting.

And it makes me so tired.

During the difficult times, we have the opportunity to discover where our trust lives. Jesus.

He is ever-present.

He knows our needs before we have even recognized them.

He is available. We simply must open our hearts.

But some days, my well is empty. And an empty well is of no use to anyone.

My life has been in a steady parade of dry seasons. These seasons seem hard. They are bare. They are the Januarys and the Tuesdays of life. 

You just must get through them, I think to myself.

Something greater awaits on the other side of this mountain, I repeat as a makeshift mantra.

But eventually, the seasons continue to be bare and dry and in need of refreshing. 

Where does my hope come from?

Where can I draw my water from?

During the dry seasons of life, we find the living well, ready to be drawn from. Jesus.

And He is there.

Waiting. 

Ever the gentleman.

To refresh my spirit and warm my heart from the cold winter.

“Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance” (James 1:2-3).

January eventually turns to February, and before I can even blink, spring is here with its blooming flowers and warmer weather. It greets me like a friend. It invites me in for a cup of coffee and an endless plate of cookies. We sit and enjoy the moment. 

My well is being refilled and my heart is becoming lighter.

Jesus.

He was always there, waiting patiently for me to recognize that He is the true living well where I can draw my strength for another day, another season, another cold winter.

He meets me at my worst and encourages me to be my best. 

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He reminds me of the gifts He has given to me, and through these tiny God-winks, I am able to view my life, with all its chaos and confusion, from a spring perspective. 

I missed unloading backpacks this time last year.

I enjoy working alongside the therapists to ensure my children continue to make progress. 

The dishes remind me of the food we are able to provide.

The laundry, well, let’s be honest here, nothing makes laundry have a renewed look.  It still stinks, literally and figuratively.

While the fear and the anxiety continue to take up residence in the corners of my home, I now can address them. I can give them a name. And with that name, I can take back some of the power they have stolen.

Because Jesus.

He knows my days, my children’s day, the diagnoses and obstacles that are in our future. They are no surprise to Him.

And when I put my trust in the one who holds all the cards, I can rest (face washed and moisturized) and fill up this empty well. 

Brandi Fought

Brandi Fought is the mother of four children with special needs. Through adoption, her family dynamic changed quickly, and she has spent her years tending to children, doctor appointments, therapies, and IEP meetings. Loss entered the Fought home in May of 2019 when the oldest Fought child passed away. With years of special needs parenting and grief behind her, she writes to help others navigate the journey of medically fragile children and faith.