Ten years ago, my twins were entering this world. We expected them with great anticipation and after many ultrasounds, and some concern about their size difference, the moment had finally arrived. Our baby girls made their entrance and all seemed perfect.
We expected no less.
I would like to say it was magical and full of butterfly kisses as I held Annie and Audrey for the first time but honestly the moment was quick. I was higher than a kite on morphine and my arms were weak. I likely only held the babies for a few minutes and was told Kirk he had better take them before I drop them. I remember my family members coming into the recovery room to see me and the twins. It seemed they were all coming in and out through a revolving door and I couldn’t stop saying how easy everything had been. Duh, it was a planned C-section and the babies were out within a minute of each other. I had expected brilliance from this hospital and they delivered no less.
I experienced some serious contractions during week 33 of the pregnancy and as a result was given the shots which would speed up the twins’ lung development, should they be premature. They could be early but not too early.
We expected the possibility of prematurity, as is common with twins.
In February of 2003, I was transferred to Mt. Sinai Hospital for prenatal care, as the twins were sharing a placenta which classified them as “high risk”. I was monitored closely for Twin-to-twin Transfusion Syndrome with weekly ultrasounds. I even met the surgeon who might do the laser surgery, should their placenta need to be cauterized before birth.
I expected the brilliance of those doctors along with modern technology to rescue my babies should it appear their lives were in danger, even before they were born.
I had some great expectations as I carried my twin girls. I expected to be tired, busy, sore, emotional, thrilled, frustrated and challenged-to name a few.
I suppose I was too wrapped up in dreaming about our future family life, I hadn’t given much thought to my spiritual life, or how it might be impacted by the arrival of these twin girls.
The SARS pandemic was just coming to a close that summer but visitors were still not allowed. One visitor per 24 hour period. Finally, on day 4 of our being in hospital, my mom decided she wasn’t waiting any longer. She and Kirk did a stealth tag-team and my mom visited and held my tiny 4 and 5 lb babies. I expected life to change for her as well, which it did, in more ways than I can count.
Ten years ago, I did not expect many things, which have now become part of my life.
Keeping track of who had how many seizures.
Being on guard against an aggressive child.
Explaining TSC, over and over again.
Feeling confused, angry, frustrated, unable.
Feeling sad and dependent.
Knowing peace-in this storm.
Being sad for the loss of what I thought our family life would be.
Being aware that my girls seem strange to onlookers.
Being aware that my girls are reflecting Jesus.
Knowing that my girls know God.
Knowing they worship God.
Being shut out.
Being cut off.
Being on my knees.
Being utterly dependent on God.
I still expected a miracle.
I didn’t expect the miracle to unfold one slow milestone at a time.
But it is.
The glory of God is what we all long for.
I expected no less.
Knowing that the glory of God is revealed in creation.
In the ones who appear to have imperfections, flawed DNA-God’s glory shines through.
Darkness cannot overcome light.
Disease cannot overcome healing.
I expect healing.
A decade of surprises, and I am more expectant than ever.
The Lord keeps giving me gifts.
It’s like a birthday every day.
I expect because I believe.
I believe because He is here.
He is here because He loves.
He loves because He is.
“But blessed is the one who trusts in the Lord, whose confidence is in him. They will be like a tree planted by the water that sends out its roots by the stream. It does not fear when heat comes; its leaves are always green. It has no worries in a year of drought and never fails to bear fruit.” (Jeremiah 17:7, 8 NIV)