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Saturday, March 7, 2015

The Tipping Point

I have been dreading this day for weeks.  Not just because it's my birthday. Not because of the getting older thing.  No.  It's one of those things that only a mother would think of.  Who else counts the days in their subconscious?  Well, God.  And me.  A few weeks ago I looked at the ticker on the top of my blog, and I knew it was getting close.  This year is full of landmarks again.  Then I did a quick guess at the time and had a terrible thought.  It was impossible.  No, too horrible.  It was late at night and I was up alone so I scrambled for a calendar and frantically started counting.  I counted how many days she was alive... again.  Yes, it was four years, four months, and four weeks.  Makiah lived in my house and snuggled in my bed and stole all of my kisses and my heart for four years, four months, and 28 days exactly.  Then she went home.  October 8th, 2010.   I started calculating how long it had been since she died and when that day would come when she had been dead longer than she was alive.  Twenty seven, twenty eight...  I could not believe it.  It landed on my birthday.  Exactly.   March 6th.  How was that possible?  I breathed.  In and out.  And I secretly started dreading.

And then came the shocking news that a young man from our church in Cairo had been hit by a car and gone to heaven.  He was the sweetest boy you could ever meet.  I picked him up and took him to church on Wednesday nights while his mom worked for years.  He and Makiah were carpool buddies.    He was a big teddy bear.  He even lived with us for a short while during his senior year.  Ohhh the pain I know his mother is feeling.  We made a trip to Cairo for his funeral.   I cried for him.  For his family.  I couldn't cry at Makiah's resurrection ground.  The girls were running around like caged animals that had been set free after the long trip.  Every time I blinked they had pulled flowers or a trinket off someone's grave, and I couldn't keep up with where they got them it happened so fast!  Then Maddie Grace got in a fire ant bed and started screaming.  We had to strip her completely to get the ants off.  So there she was buck naked in the grave yard screaming her head off.  Then the other two wanted to show me the coins they had "found" so they could put them in their piggy banks!  Let's just say we left in a hurry.  New flowers on the grave but no emotional room for tears!  I really hope no one was watching!

The twins turned four on February 22nd.  The last birthday I got to have with Makiah was her fourth. On February 19th, I went upstairs to check on Abby about 11:00 at night because she was coughing so much.  When I went in the room she was having an asthma attack.  Her first.  She was sitting up crying but she couldn't vocalize.  She didn't have enough air.  I yelled for Cameron to get her inhaler that had just been prescribed per the coughing.  She couldn't breath it in and began to vomit up mucous.  We tried the nebulizer but she started turning purple.  Literally.  Still she didn't have enough breath to talk.  Cameron threw her in the car and headed for the emergency room.  My other three babies were asleep so I collapsed on the floor in the dining room as the front door shut.  I called my mama and asked her to pray as my voice broke and the tears began to flow.  I lay there on the floor and prayed.  My whole body shook from fear.  I felt like I was back at the accident scene in a flash.  I tried to push away thoughts of a student from my school that had just passed away two nights before from an asthma attack.  I.  Begged.  God.

Maybe it was a miracle.  Maybe it was the cold air.  It was freezing that night.  For some reason the attack  stopped before they even reached  the hospital.  Her oxygen was 100 when they checked it.   I hardly slept that night.  Or the night after that.  I was a wreck.

And then a few of you sent me messages that you were praying for me.  Almost as if you knew somehow.  And I began to think I was not forgotten.  By Him.

I woke up this morning early.   My hair was still wet from the shower when my sweet hubby surprised me with breakfast.  We snuck downstairs to eat together and it was snowing!  And for some crazy reason my kids slept until 7.  That in itself is a miracle, but The Snow!  You see, it didn't even really snow much in our county or the rest of Atlanta.  The weather station even said it was sunny and 50!  But they were wrong.  Right there at our house it snowed giant flakes that stuck and blanketed the whole yard with white.  Redeeming, cleansing white.  On my birthday.

We lit a candle.  I showed Cameron the scripture that happened to be what I was learning today... James 2:13  ...Mercy triumphs...  It grabbed me.  Then he showed me what he happened to read this morning.

Jeremiah 31:15-17The Message (MSG)

15-17 Again, God’s Message:

“Listen to this! Laments coming out of Ramah,
    wild and bitter weeping.
It’s Rachel weeping for her children,
    Rachel refusing all solace.
Her children are gone,
    gone—long gone into exile.”
But God says, “Stop your incessant weeping,
    hold back your tears.
Collect wages from your grief work.” God’s Decree.
    “They’ll be coming back home!
There’s hope for your children.” God’s Decree.
And I felt Hope.  And Mercy.

Then tonight I read an email sent yesterday from a friend in Cairo.  She said we had been heavy on her heart for a week.  She talked about my sweet Makiah and how she was crying out to God for us.  She copied me this scripture:
Psalms 116.
I love God because he listened to me,

    listened as I begged for mercy.
He listened so intently
    as I laid out my case before him.
Death stared me in the face,
    hell was hard on my heels.Up against it, I didn’t know which way to turn;
    then I called out to God for help:
“Please, God!” I cried out.
    “Save my life!”
God is gracious—it is he who makes things right,
    our most compassionate God.
God takes the side of the helpless;
    when I was at the end of my rope, he saved me.

Today my ticker on the top of the blog says four years, four months, four weeks, and one day.  The scales have tipped.  Somehow this moment is only really monumental to me.  But God knew.  He orchestrated things in a way today, on my birthday, that no one else could.  Couching my day with scripture and threading sweet friends throughout.  This milestone has passed.  Midnight has come and gone again.  Though it is not easy,  I know His love is real.  It is for me.  It is for you.  He is for you.  There is only One we need in our corner when the scales of life are tipping.

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