The bible verse that has stuck with me these last couple days in the midst of all the terrible news headlines and stories is John 16:33: “In this world you will have trouble. But take heart, I have overcome the world.” How beautiful and comforting. Now my daily trials are nothing compared to people who live and experience true evil the like we have heard in a resounding voice as of late, but it reminded me, that no trouble, big or small, is too much for God.

Most of the time, I am thankful and grateful and focused on the positive. I try to live life optimistically and be a light in the darkness. But am I human, and when things like lack of sleep happen or Carter goes through his pinching phases, it’s much harder to feel like everything is going to be okay. We have not been able to tie his change in behavior(s) to anything yet (any ideas would be welcomed) and that makes it even more difficult because nothing’s changed and yet, everything’s changed.

Anytime you have a child who doesn’t speak, it makes it difficult to pinpoint problems – is he sick, does he hurt, is he tired, is he hungry, is he just sad, is he upset, etc, etc, etc. Add in the fact that he also doesn’t communicate effectively otherwise (with his device) and doesn’t know enough signs to communicate everything, it makes it ten times worse. Watching your child get upset, pinch you, pinch himself, pinch others, is awful and heartbreaking. I try to remember that he’s not doing it to “be bad.” He is hurting in someway and it’s the only way he knows to tell someone he’s hurting is by hurting – himself and others. I try to show him grace and patience and understanding. But factor in no sleep, and that makes it really hard. I yell, I cry, I hold his hands, and I try to gather myself. I’m not always proud of how I handle the situation.

The next day, we are both wounded, emotionally and sometimes physically. I try to gather strength to face the new day, unsure of how it might turn out. Carter can go from great to bad to great in a heartbeat. Sometimes the tough days/nights are fleeting and other times they feel like they will never end. The exhaustion is overwhelming and in those moments I am reminded of my weakness and God’s strength. I don’t have to be strong on my own, I can give it God and he will give me water when I am dry and restore my strength. There are songs I listen to when I need to reconnect with Him and cry and let go of my troubles to someone who is more equipped to handle them. There are certain verses that just resonate every time I hear them. “When peace like a river attendth my way, when sorrow like sea billows roll.  Whatever my lot thou hast taught me to say, it is well, it is well with my soul.” ” What if your blessings come through raindrops, what if your healing comes through tears, what if a thousand sleepless nights are what it takes to know you’re near…” “Oh to grace how great a debtor daily I’m constrained to be. Let Thy goodness like a fetter, bind my wandering heart to thee. Prone to wander, Lord I feel it, prone to leave the God I love. Here’s my heart, oh, take and seal it, seal it for Thy courts above.”

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