I have heard mamas say watching your child be sick or struggle is one of the most painful things to go through. I always thought “Yeah, that would be hard.” I had no idea HOW hard until I experienced it for myself.
I had my first life experience watching my child, of my own flesh and blood, get sick, and not be able to fix it.
I’m a problem solver. When things are broken, I fix them. When there’s a problem, I find a solution. When others are having a hard time, I want to fix it for them.
I had to watch Evelyn suffer. She was miserable without understanding. She would look at me helplessly with her sick eyes, begging for me to fix it. And I couldn’t. I had to listen to her cough til she would throw up. My heart would break. So many times I wished that I could be the one sick if she could be healthy. I would rather carry the burden for her.
Even asleep, she looked miserable. This lasted for two weeks.
I’ve found that often the hardest experiences I’ve gone through, are the most spiritual, and the times I’m the most teachable.
So badly I wanted to teach Evelyn about my favorite scripture, D&C 122:7-9.
7 And if thou shouldst be cast into the pit, or into the hands of murderers, and the sentence of death passed upon thee; if thou be cast into the deep; if the billowing surge conspire against thee; if fierce winds become thine enemy; if the heavens gather blackness, and all the elements combine to hedge up the way; and above all, if the very jaws of hell shall gape open the mouth wide after thee, know thou, my son, that all these things shall give thee experience, and shall be for thy good.
9 Therefore, hold on thy way, and the priesthood shall remain with thee; for their bounds are set, they cannot pass. Thy days are known, and thy years shall not be numbered less; therefore, fear not what man can do, for God shall be with you forever and ever.
When Joseph Smith was in the middle of what seemed to be the most miserable experience of his life, he asked for it to be taken away. Heavenly Father didn’t. I love the whole passage where he explains that all experiences shall be for our good.
But my favorite line is “hold on thy way.” This phrase got me through the toughest times in my life. It’s the most tender way of saying endure to the end.
God didn’t take away the pain of the atonement for the Savior. And as a parent, I can’t imagine how painful it was to watch. I watched Evelyn have a cold, and that just about did me in. To watch your Son take on the pains of entire mankind would be excruciating.
It may sound silly, but I feel closer to my Heavenly Father after this experience. And I know He will always give us strength to get through our mortal trials. That’s why we are here. He loves us, and it IS hard for Him to watch us go through hard things. But that doesn’t take His love away from us. It increases.
So Evelyn, this is the first of many trials in your life. Hold on thy way!