Celina looked up at me, barely able to talk and stammered, "I don't know why she offered to help me if she was going to be so mean to me.
"They are going skating today and Celina was worried she wouldn't be able to lace up her roller blades. An occupational therapist has worked with my daughter all year to help her tie her shoes. She's made progress, but she can't do it tight enough for it to hold. For those of you who don't know, my daughter was born with a severe seizure disorder and has delayed development.
I hugged her and said all the "mom stuff" but I know I needed to give her something that would really help her deal with this, but I didn't know what to do. I discovered that the other girl didn't say any of this in front of the other children and she didn't tell any of the other kids. Therefore, if she was trying to be mean, wouldn't she have done this? Celina also has Sensory Integration Disorder and she is physically and emotionally over-sensitive to things. Sometimes she thinks I'm angry with her when I'm not, or I've yelled at her when I haven't. I couldn't help, but wonder if this could be happening with the other little girl.
Then my daughter told me, "I just want people to understand me." She wanted to explain to this girl about her seizures and her delayed development, but she didn't know how. I can barely explain it. So I pulled out a few photos of Celina when she was in the hospital, wrote down a few notes to take with her to camp. This seemed to help her. She wants to share it for some reason. How do I know that God isn't going to plant a seed in that girl or one of the other children in her camp? I don't, so I have to trust Him in this.
As I walked back to the bathroom to get ready for work, a dark image of some girls playing a trick on me when I was Celina's age came to mind. We were in Girl Scouts and we had a bathroom break. They cut the light off on me and locked me in so I couldn't get out of that part of the church. It was at night. It was an old church and I was scared. Even then I called on Jesus. "Jesus, help me not to be scared.
Jesus, help me find a way out. Jesus, help me!" I cried. I was around ten. I found a way out and they couldn't believe it, but I refused to give them any satisfaction of letting them know I had cried or that I had been scared.
This morning I almost started crying again. "Lord, please don't let Celina have to go through that."
A soft whisper came to me. "My child, you went through those things so you will know how your daughter feels and so you will be able to help her." I did cry then. Because kids were so mean and cruel to me. They wouldn't even let me sit down on the bus. I had to stand nearly every morning on my way to school. I didn't have any delayed developments or special needs. I was simply poor and I wore glasses. I cried this morning because I don't know how to help her. My reaction was bitterness, anger, and resentment. I'm still recovering from a lot of what other kids did to me in my childhood. These wounds and the scars are deep. I don't want any of that to happen to my child, and I definitely don't want her to react the same way I did.
My husband's response is, "you will heal through this. As you help her respond in ways other than anger and bitterness, it will bring your healing too."
My first instinct is, I'm okay. I've lived through it and it's in my past. Just don't mess with my kid. Yet, I know that as I've had to trust God with her seizures, her healing and her struggles with the delayed development, I will have to trust Him in this, too.
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