A while back we were eating dinner with some fabulous friends who have a son with a similar chromosomal deletion just like Eveys. His deletion just happens to be on the 7th chromosome instead of the 17th. As the Dad was offering a blessing on the food he asked Heavenly Father that he might bless Nate & I to make the right decisions for Evey. I was touched by his prayer and his specific wording regarding making decisions. It was also incredibly nice to hear someone else praying for us because it's not something we get to hear often, eventhough we know there are countless prayers being offered on our family's behalf. We pray for Evey every night, but never have we used the words "to make the right decisions." It really impacted me and it's something I've thought about often since that dinner.
Decision making is an interesting concept in the parenting world. As the kids are getting older and Evey's getting bigger we are venturing out more into the crazy outside world. Nate & I talk often about making decisions, specifically when it's right to push your kids and when it's okay to ease up. Even with the other half of our "typical" kids, we know it's equally applicable.
When I was just a young fearless three year old I decided to climb to the top of the high dive at our local swimming pool because I was determined to jump off just like my big brothers and sisters(sounds like Zoey, right?). I got up to the top and was so paralyzed with fear I just stood there crying and didn't want to climb back down the tall ladder. So what did my Dad do? He climbed right up, walked me to the end of the high dive and dropped me off of it. I came out of that water loving it and walked right back to the high dive and did it over and over again. From that day on I learned even though I'm scared of heights, I can do scary and hard things.
The last few months with Owen have been a similar story. Sure, he has autism and his meltdowns are a lot more autistic than "typical" kids, but it's a meltdown none the less. We wanted to take him on a ferris wheel at our local sporting good store, but when Nate took him he absolutely lost it and would not go on it. Subsequently, Eli loses it because he can't go on it by himself. Nate dragged them out of the store and brought them home for dinner and a calm down session, while we slowly talked some courage into Owen. After a half hour of enouragement, Nate willingly put the boys back in the car and drove them to that darned ferris wheel. He carried a reluctant Owen on that ferris wheel, and wouldn't you know, it is now Owen's favorite thing to do, next to disneyland. I told you I have the wisest men in my life.
I'm facing similar decision making with Evey. How hard to push her with her limitations and when to ease up. It is a daily/hourly battle in this wondeful life called parenting. I'm so grateful for a perfectly worded prayer that quietly assured me that we are not alone in making decisions for our Heavenly Father's children. What a beautiful, reassuring blessing it is to know that if we do our best with the Lord's guidance, he will take over the rest.