A Story to Tell

Six years.

Six years ago the plot could have taken a different turn... but it didn’t.

My big boy is turning six today. His birthday is sometimes bittersweet. Some years it’s just harder to choose the happiness on his birthday. Because his birthday is a reminder of the day we almost lost it all. (Meaning him and I both—for those of you that don’t know the whole huge story.)

Add in that my baby man is turning one next week and I am just a hot mess of emotions.

I need time to slow down.

I need them to know how loved they are. How very proud of them I am.

How I could have picked a thousand different lives and I still would live this one right here.

That being their mom has been the ride and honor of a lifetime.

Six years. It seems like just yesterday I sat in a NICU panicking over every beep and blip from the seven different machines that breathed life into my baby. I wondered if we’d ever bring him home. I wondered if we did, if he’d ever catch up. I wondered if he’d ever forgive me for my body failing him at one of his most vulnerable times. If I’d ever forgive myself.

I'm not going to tell you I handled it well because I didn't. That sort of guilt is... suffocating.

But today that same little boy is a kind, nerdy human that I couldn’t love and adore more.

If I’ve said it once, I’ve said it a thousand times, I believe science AND God saved my baby. Despite what the world may tell you, it doesn’t have to be either or. We were in the city of a top five children’s hospital for a reason. We had access to some of the best pediatricians in the world. Yet there was no scientific reason he improved at the rate in which he did. Or a scientific reason I didn’t have more brain damage from the swelling and seizures I had.

Some may call it luck. I call it blessing.

Still, today on this day sometimes I feel the panic rising up. I relive those scary days, hands down some of the darkest days of my life, and I want to either scream or curl up in a ball and cry.

But the story wasn’t done. Despite the pain, it ended up being just a small plot twist. Not a minor one by any means, but a small plot twist that would affect the overall arc of the story.

Because of that small plot twist, I chose to believe that some power greater than I believed I had a story to tell. That I wasn't done yet.

I chose to not waste another day avoiding my dream of writing. I chose to ignore the doubters. And believe me, I had plenty. Still do. *Wiggles fingers at haters.*

While my now six-year-old was an infant napping, I started writing The Culling.

It’s been six years. I’m still here. I get to be a mom to the cutest three little boys. And I get to tell you all a story...

It’s a story of love. It’s a story of impending darkness, of a heart on the brink of being irrevocably shattered. And at the end of the day...

The darkness never even stood a chance.

Fight through your own plot twists. Claw your way out. Find a way to get to the other side, even when it’s so far away you can’t even see it. Find that speck of light at the end of the tunnel and absorb it, make it your own.

Because maybe just maybe there’s a power greater than you are who’s been with you this whole time.

And maybe just maybe you have a story to tell.

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