Tod chose it and taught the kids about Abraham Lincoln; he had multiple failures before becoming a powerful president. His first wife died tragically, he was publicly ridiculed, and lost many elections before he finally won. His point to us -- we don't give up when things get hard. We get up and we keep trying. We do our best even if it's just one day at a time.
A couple weeks later was Fast Sunday which is when members of the congregation can voluntarily share their testimony from the pulpit. As people started going up Lennon climbed over me and walked up to the front. I looked at Tod and he shrugged his shoulders -- neither of us had told him to stand. We've never encouraged our kids to publicly bear their testimonies because we've wanted it to be their choice.
So I sat in the pew and listened while my seven year old son bore his testimony. He said:
I want to bear my testimony today about families. Families are a big part of Heavenly Father's plan. But not all families are the same. Some have a mom and a dad. Some have just a mom alone or just a dad alone. Some have kids and some don't. Sometimes there aren't parents but grandparents instead. But it doesn't matter. Every family looks different - but that's all part of the plan. Heavenly Father made it that way on purpose. In the name of Jesus Christ, amen.
And then he sat down.
I was touched by such a simple testimony about something so true.
I just wanted to let you know today Shantay had a routine ultrasound and the measurements of our baby are off. Head and torso measuring at 32 weeks. Legs measure at 20 weeks. Shantay met with a genetics doctor and early signs point to dwarfism. We will know for sure a week from today.
That Friday their doctor called to confirm that their baby did have Achondroplasia or dwarfism.
This news has been a shock to our family and especially to Tommy and Shantay. We are worried about their baby's health, Shantay and the delivery, his quality of life, etc... However, there has also been a definitive peace as well. Somehow things will be okay. Just different than we expected. He is about to join a family who is fiercely loyal, has faith in God, and puts family first. He will be loved and protected.
I've also been thinking about Lennon's testimony. Every family is different. Some of our problems are easy to see and others are private and hidden from the world. Some struggles are physical while others are emotional, financial or spiritual. But they're there. We are all different and fighting personal battles everyday. And like Lennon said, Heavenly Father made it that way on purpose.
My Grandma Jewel used to sing us a song...usually when we didn't want to pull weeds...and now I sing it to my kids (and myself) all the time.
If a thing is hard to do, I'll not sit and cry.
I will sing a happy song and try, try, TRY.
We can do hard things.