Living with Cerebral Palsy 🍋🍋

Wednesday, 23 November 2011

Keep the Faith..

A couple of weeks ago somebody I haven't known for long asked after Elin. She is a very religious person and attends Church regularly, unlike me on both counts. But I have to have total respect for her faith. Bad things have befallen her and she still has this unwavering faith. My feelings on this subject vary between scorn and envy. It is hard to believe in a God that is merciful and kind and good when you have to deal with things that test you to your very core. When you see evil people and awful parents and people who don't give a shit dragging up five perfectly healthy children and you wonder...why? Seriously why? I have never been deeply religious but when I got pregnant it seemed such a miracle to me that I prayed every single night of my pregnancy without fail. I felt stupid at first but then I got used to it and I started to think yeah, maybe someone is listening. Im pregnant after all despite the odds. Maybe there is a God. Maybe He is good, maybe He performs miracles. Then Elin was born and I felt like this God I had persuaded myself to believe in had thrown a massive egg on my face. Where was He? Where had he been, why wasn't Elin the healthy baby I prayed for? We nearly lost her, how could He let this happen? I know what a believer would say. A believer would say he DID save her that night, because she is still here. A believer would say God only chooses special parents for special children. A believer would say God works in mysterious ways. But I could no longer believe. I was bitter and angry and resentful and started to think 'I knew it. I knew it was a load of balls'. I am well aware that this is not the point of faith, that it's not about just praying for what you want and throwing a major strop when you don't get it, but I just could not and cannot bring myself to think about it anymore. Too painful. Anyway, this lady asked how Elin was and I told her and she said 'Ah but God is Great. God performs miracles' . Just like that. Right there out of nowhere talking about God as if it's an absolute fact, as if she just assumed I believed. I expected to feel angry, but I didn't. You would think I might have wanted to say 'Oh yeah? He doesn't seem that great to me' because frankly, He doesn't. But instead I was just sort of in awe of this blind faith and what an amazing comfort that must be when you are going through hard times. She genuinely believed what she was saying, she was being kind because faith is all she knows. It must be equally alien to her that I might not believe as her all consuming love of God is for me. To be honest it makes me jealous I almost wish I had that. I wish I had a reason why this had to happen to my daughter. I wish I could think it was part of His master plan for me and for the Universe. Would that make it easier? Probably. But whilst the bitterness outweighs the envy I can't see me stomaching prayers again, not yet. Maybe I will start by watching Song's Of Praise again and see where I go from there......

1 comment

  1. This blog post made me think a bit before replying. I don't believe in 'God' in the way that a Christian would. I have my own faith, which is strong and has been with me for a while, but I don't believe in a God who has a plan for everyone and who sprinkles miracles.

    I do think that everything happens for a reason though. And that good can come out out the blackest of occurences and even the worst tragedies.

    I think about a friend of mine, who has a disabled sister, whose parents found the will and drive to set up Hope House, which has now given respite and help and indeed hope to many parents who have children who need that extra love and attention. Was it a tragedy that their child was born with those difficulties? Yes it was. But good was borne of it, however painful that might be.

    And then I started thinking of all of the good work you've done, fighting those decisions about closing the children's wards, raising awareness, getting people involved and reminding people that they have a right to have a say in these sorts of decisons. Would you have done that without realising exactly how valuable those services were? We all like to think we would do such things but we need that personal spur to gear us into actions and you took your bad experiences and your pain and channelled it into making sure things did not get worse for other people. That takes a rare kind of strength.

    Parents with fully able children would never have set up something like Hope House. Nor would they have campaigned so strongly and forthrightly for the salvation of those services, which if removed could have lead to heartache and heartbreak for many more people.

    How many families were saved? Marriages saved? People's lives saved? It's immense to think about once you start (and I do intend to go back to my scheduled Friday-night-vino after I finish this thought, because the thought is overwhelming)

    I don't believe that God tests people, but I do think that life does and that some people rise to that challenge with vigour and strength and courage, and I've watched you do that this year Ruth. Elin is a treasure as she is, and although what happened to her and to you is still a tragedy, you have brought good out of it with the results of your campaign about the children's wards. And you are a treasure also, for your strength and all the good you have done in your campaign.

    Kate x


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