Today is the birthday of our oldest son. He was born late on the night before Tennessee played its last game of the season and nailed the SEC championship. His dad was the starting tailback and the delivery room was filled with family and friends ready to celebrate and lend moral support.
The celebrations were silenced as complications took Matt’s twin and left Matty with severe brain damage, but the love and support have continued for all of his forty-three years.
To say I have pondered this often would be a vast understatement. For many years, I think it’s all I did ponder – 24/7, but as this beautiful wild child fought his way through infancy, childhood, adolescence and now adulthood I pondered less and accepted more.
As I accepted, I learned these lessons from my special son:
Moms are loved unconditionally. I was often unlovable.
I was actually a delight to him. He squealed and laughed at the sound of my voice when I arrived to pick him up at school. He still does.
The world does not revolve around me. I still struggle with that lesson.
Never give up. The doctors told us we would probably only have him for a year.
Expectations depend on a healthy brain. Everyone can learn, but the process is much easier for some than others.
Support from your faith family is precious. Our church family forty-three years ago loved us up!
God always provides! Through our many moves God always went before and prepared a learning situation for our son’s special needs.
Everything is easier with a partner. Mine is a great father and husband.
The siblings of special children are themselves very special. Matt’s sisters have spirits that are sweet and yet tough. They can do anything.
Nobody is perfect and perfection isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. There’s a lot to be said for the “warts and all” theory.
In her journal Mother wrote, “Streams in the Desert, Dear tested and tried believer, it is your mission to walk onto the stage of life in order to reveal to all heaven and earth that the music of life lies not in your circumstances or external things but in your own soul.”
The minute Matt walked onto the stage of life he revealed the music of life deep in our souls that without him we might never have sung. Happy Birthday Matt!