I shared a post on Facebook earlier this week with this title. All I could think of was some sweet friends of mine facing a hard situation with the foster child they mentor. This kid is turning 18 and determined to walk away from all things DHS. Sign himself out. Be on his own. Etc, etc. Now, these friends are not naive. They know what comes with that. They have tried to set him up with a transitional program, been a sounding board for advice, and given tough parenting advice along the way. But, alas, they can't make the decision for him. And the reality is, he will sign himself out. Have hard time after hard time and likely end up on the streets or living from place to place and never really settle.
As I read the article I thought of Anna's situation briefly....but nothing much. This is how I function. I am pretty self sufficient and just kind of keep things to myself. It's why up until a week ago only about 3 people knew the date of Annalise's surgery. I figured there is so much more going on in the world, and this is just something minor. Check it off the list and move on.
And like with most things, I just kind of put it to the back of my mind until today. We met with the child life specialist, anesthesiologist, gave blood, and toured the ICU and regular rooms. It was there it started to hit me. Not just that my daughter was having surgery, but that she was having a follow up surgery to something I was not a part of. Something that I had no part of in the beginning. They kept saying things like....."you will go down and give blood because she will likely need a transfusion...but she had that last time" or "this surgery is slightly less invasive than last time" or "we have the OR booked for 6 hours, but this one will likely take less time than last time" and all I could think of was....this is our first time!! This is our first time touring an ICU room and hearing that siblings will need to meet with child life before they see Annalise because it will be scary. This is the first time I have sent my child back to have their head cut open and things in various places fixed, filled in, and reshaped. I am the mom who doesn't like it when their kids wake up from ear tubes. And we have had 7 pairs of those between 3 kids.
This mama doesn't put babies in baskets. This mama has a very hard time with the fact that she wasn't around for the first major surgery. This mama ignores situations until they hit her in the face. This mama accepts no help and always looks at the fact that there are things out there much worse than what she is facing right now.
But it doesn't change the fact that Monday I will put my baby in a basket and send her off. She will be in the hands of a neurosurgeon and plastic surgeon and I have no doubt she will come out on the other side just fine. But so many parents don't have that reassurance. They put their babies in a basket and have no idea of what is waiting on the other side. They pour into a teen who decides to walk away from it all. They put their baby in a basket and send him floating down a river because it's the only thing they know to do.
All I know is this....today I spent some time wallowing. I wallowed over the fact that I can't compare this surgery to the first one. I don't know how invasive that one was. I wasn't there to comfort her when it was over. And so much more. But....I am ready. And willing. To put my baby in a basket. Because if there is one thing I know for sure, it's that this child is primed to do great things. She may not lead people out of Egypt one day, but she will move for God in a mighty way. That I am sure.