Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Sam's Story

This is Sam
I have always admired large families. In my teen years several of my close friends were the products of those types. Seven kids, ten kids, nine kids. Those households were crazy and messy and fun. This had an impact on me.  I ordered up a soccer team of boys for my future expectations.

After getting married and checking the first two slots off of my all-boys roster in quick succession, the genetic quirks that had limited my mom to four kids and my grandmother to three manifested themselves. For eight long years we tried and failed to have our third. The doctors were not encouraging; my body looked at pregnancy like it was a peanut butter and onion sandwich. Blech, no thanks.

I was beyond grateful for the two awesome boys I had and finally came to terms with the fact that it just wasn’t in the cards that we should have another baby. It was then, once I had accepted God’s will that a miracle occurred. 

That miracle arrived after a tumultuous 8 ½ months of health issues and eventual bed rest. No kidding that little super-pink bundle of joy nearly did me in. It was such a rocky road that when it was over and we had a healthy baby girl in our arms I said to Buns “never again!” 

Life went on and due to the disturbing realization that it takes money to raise three kids, Buns and I found ourselves on the hamster wheel. I worked at a bank days, he did technical support nights. We would pass each other coming and going and our conversations happened on phone calls at break times. 

I would come home from stressful fast paced workdays and cook dinner, help with homework, do laundry, and make sure everyone was bathed and ready for the next day. Then there was the other million things that moms do. On top of that our little girl had nonstop ear infections. She and I sat up countless nights, rocking and trying everything to soothe the pain in her ears. I was exhausted, and because of the economic conditions of the area, didn’t see any possibility of getting out of our hamster cage anytime soon.

Even with the situation not being ideal, we were happy and I would think to myself “man I sure am glad we are done having kids, I just couldn’t do it again.” 

You can imagine my surprise, when on one of the rare days a week Buns and I were home together, he said to me “Brenda, I feel like we need to have another baby.” After doing a proverbial spit take I nearly shouted “you can’t be serious?” 

So that you don’t get the wrong impression, Buns is not a person who likes watching his spouse run herself into the ground. He gets no joy out of torturing her (unless it is to fluff the covers once in a while). He knew our situation but had been having the impression for some time and had prayerfully considered it. He knew how I was going to react, but could not keep ignoring that prompting.

After a few minutes of hyperventilating, I decided that there was no way God was going to ask this of me. He knew I was going to get sick. He knew it was going to take everything I had to be pregnant and keep up what I was doing. There was no way he was going to ask me to do this. It was too hard. I decided to pray about it, confident that the answer was going to be that Buns was just engaging in wishful thinking. 

I chose to ask my question a few days later in a quiet spot in our bedroom. I started off telling Heavenly Father all of the reasons this was a bad idea. It wasn’t that I didn’t want another child, I did, but the circumstances were just not right. I couldn’t do it. I then told Father that I would do His will whatever that was, but I was certain I knew what the answer would be. As I knelt there I had a sense of peace fill my heart but didn’t get a yes or no. I stayed for a while waiting but nothing came. 

I got up and headed out into the hall. As I did, I glanced over at a small table that was next to the door. There on the table was a copy of the Ensign magazine. The cover picture was a beautiful painting by Carl Bloch of Christ, He was pointing to a little boy. They were both looking expectantly at me. I stopped in my tracks and could not tear my eyes from that picture. 

Frozen in that moment, the Spirit flooded me with the knowledge that there was a little boy, a member of our family, who was waiting to join us. His name was Sam and nothing would be complete without him. All the worry about work, and kids, energy, and health evaporated instantly. Sam was waiting and we needed him. 

Tears streaming down my face I went to tell Buns what I had learned. Even with that powerful confirmation of the Spirit I knew it had taken almost 9 years the last time around. Sam would probably take a decade to arrive.

One month later I was pregnant. 

As expected, there were serious trials to be had and overcome in the short term. And even with the conviction that I was doing the Lord's will, there was some major whining done on my part. It was hard, it was scary, there were many moments spent by myself, and Buns, and others praying for us. Priesthood blessings were had. Once again, bed rest was impatiently endured. Thankfully Sammy arrived healthy and happy. 

Not too much later our life in the world of hamsters ended with a move across the country to a place where the pace is slow and everyone has a drawl. We were directed  to a situation that allowed us to be together, to take care of our kids in the way we wanted, and to slow down.

Now as I look at my precocious, adorable, long-lashed Sam I shake my head at the foolishness of my selfish attitude. I don't know better than the Lord what will bring joy into my life. My perspective is so limited, why can't I let go and trust him more? Part of me knows that it is because I am a wimp and with the best blessings there always seems to be hard work, faith, overcoming fear, and pain to be had before we get to the good stuff. And sometimes things don't work out the way we think they should. Sometimes they do. 

Either way when we keep doing His will the joy eventually comes, the blessing is exponentially bigger than the discomfort of the trial preceding it, and He is able to teach and bless us in completely wonderful and unexpected ways.

And sometimes that blessing will squeeze your cheeks between his little hands and say "I wuv you mom."



1 comment:

  1. #1 - I do NOT have a "drawl".
    #2 - You have not slowed down a bit, which is why I never get to see you.
    #3 - I am so glad you had Sam. He is the best hugger!
    $4 - This is one of my favorite stories - I am so happy to have it in writing.

    Nancy E. Doyle aka anonymous.


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