Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Fibular Hemimelia -Little Sister

Because she has been right here, every step of the way.  Because she is Ethan's greatest fan.  Because she inspires me so ... This blog is for you, Emily Ann.

Tonight, I've sat thinking about what to write, how to capture in words her true nature.  She is, in a word, beautiful!

Now, most moms are a little biased, but I'm just telling it like it is.  She wants to be a princess when she grows up, loves, more than anything, to practice ballet, and won't leave home without a baby doll.  YET, catches worms and frogs, chews her finger nails religiously, and has one of those faces --you know, the ones that are perpetually dirty, covered in Cheetos or sticky ice cream.  She's the greatest of girls.

She is, in a word, beautiful.  Have you seen bluer eyes? 

Oh, where has this little version of my girl gone?

Oh, I think she'd bring home a crown in any beauty contest, but she never will.  Why not?  Because they've got the categories all wrong.   What do I mean?  I mean she didn't do much to achieve natural beauty.  She just happened to be the recipient of some good genes.  Yep, that's right --she got those eyes from her Daddy!  I don't want her to collect trophies for her outside ... for "Favour is deceitful and beauty is vain:  but a woman that feareth the Lord she shall be praised" -Proverbs 31:30.  We're going for the bigger crown --you know, the one that she'll lay at the feet of her Saviour!

I saw this sign on a near by lawn, and thought it should be my motto (check out the second rung written in red)!  Yep, I thought, this is a Facebook profile picture waiting to happen.

 Then, I had second thoughts.  If you post a sign like this as your personal motto, then you better live it.  Emily, sweetheart, it's your motto, not mine.  Since we've been in Baltimore, I've had the privilege of seeing the best in my children.  The image of Ethan that I will never forget is one of hands clasped, eyes closed, prayers raised to God that his therapist would come to know that "Jesus is the Messiah, the Lord of Lords, the King of Kings."  What compares to hearing your child burdened with the salvation of someone they care for?  Emily's prayers always include her brother and that "God would please, please Lord, help his leg."

What she has taught me here is one of the fundamental roles that I, as a woman, should fulfill.  She is an Encourager --perhaps that's her gift.  From the time Ethan wakes until he goes to sleep at night, she never fails to speak to him encouraging words.  She praises his efforts to walk, and she stands at the physical therapy room door telling him, "Calm down, you can do it."  She watches him swim for two hours a week, while she hasn't had the chance in a month, and asks, "Can you see me, Ethan" --as she ducks under a wooden bar on the outside of the pool, playing with him as he exercises.  She's accepted the fact that he needs a lot of our attention much more gracefully than would any adult.  She's watched Ethan open lots of mail and receive many presents, yet when she received a little gift of money in a card today --and he didn't, she immediately offered over the card to him.  And no, she doesn't even understand what the word begrudgingly means --it's just love, that's all, she just loves him.  

She loves him more than herself, and her selflessness brings me to tears, making me ask, "Who do I love that much?  Do I love my God that much?  My husband?  My children?  My family?  My friends?"  Do I shower anyone with affection the way that she so generously showers everyone.  You cannot visit us without a thousand Emily kisses and hugs or without hearing how much she loves you.  Do the ones I love know I love them, like they are so assured of her love?

God reminded me tonight that Emily's love for Ethan is an answered prayer.  I had forgotten how many times I had prayed that they love each other --and that Emily, especially, love her brothers and be a strong nurturing force in their lives.  To God be the glory --and may He continue to develop in her a generous heart.  May Ethan love her as much ... and as selflessly, as she loves him.  May Josh watch over this little girl, protecting her and leading her by example.  May she continue to inspire me to worry less about the outside, fleeting vanity, and more about become gorgeous on the inside!

One last pic:  after a long night of fireworks, Emily gets a ride with her best buddy.