Wednesday, April 30, 2008

To Tell or Not to Tell

My neighbor noticed that I was pregnant today. We were talking about it across the street from each other. All I could tell her is that we are thrilled, it's a boy, and we are due in August. It wasn't the right time to tell her more. I left feeling a little guilty. I know that sooner or later she will find out, and she will think about all the time that has passed with out me telling her anything.

But I really struggle with this. I don't know when I should share the entire story with people, and how. It's not like I can just blurt it out. I have to carefully judge the circumstances and try to judge if the person I am talking to is ready to hear more.

I also have to be very careful how I tell them. If I give them facts with out very much emotion they give me the feeling that they think I don't care about my baby. I think it is really hard for anyone to understand that I don't have to cry every time I talk or think about Timothy. That I have known about this for almost 10 weeks and that we are trying to celebrate his life as much as possible while we have him with us.

Austin and Emma do not struggle with telling people at all. If someone (stranger or acquaintance) asks about our pregnancy and they are with me, they have a very small child telling them the facts very bluntly. It normally goes something like this..."My brother is deadly sick. He is going to die and live in heaven." They just look at me, in shock. I normally nod and tell them that the kids are correct and they go away from us as quickly as they can. I find that I envy my children. They don't have to worry about how to act or what to say. They love their brother and want him to live with us, but they also get to process this from a child's point of view and they accept facts easier then adults do.

I am a little surprised how hard it can be to talk about this even with my friends and family. I have people that try to give me hope by telling me that God can provide a miracle for Timothy and we might have a normal baby. I try to gently explain to them that I am not expecting, hoping, or praying for a healthy child. That we are just praying that God takes him home when the time is right and he will not suffer. There are times that I feel people don't like me saying these things. They don't understand that for God to perform a miracle on Timothy, it would require every cell in his entire body to be altered. It is not a matter of a quick surgery to correct his heart, or a healing of his brain. This condition affects every single cell in his entire body. I understand that nothing is impossible for God but yet I have to deal with the fact that God made Timothy with Trisomy 18. He gave us this beautiful boy that will be going to live in heaven sooner then we would like. We don't fully understands why God choose us for this journey or who we will impact. God has a plan for our family and we know that He will reveal it to us in time.


Michelle & Aaron said...

Jen, thanks for sharing your heart with us. I can't even imagine how difficult those decisions are, how to have those conversations... how to balance your heart and your head at any given moment... Praying for continued peace and inner joy as you have this time with Timothy, and for the freedom to feel each emotion at that moment.

Grace and peace to you and your family!

The Finnestad Family said...

Faith like a child, right? And yet...watching our children have these conversations with eachother at such a young age causes my heart to break with sadness while at the same time swell with love. I am so grateful for your friendship and for our childrens' friendships. I cherish those heart to heart conversations we have just as much as I cherish the moments when we don't need to say a word, but can still hear eachother's hearts.