I couldn’t tell how big the snake was. Maybe four feet. No doubt it had a rattle on the end. I had just glanced outside to check on our boys playing with the dog in the front when I spotted it, curled up on our porch. That’s when panic set in. I raced for the door just as N, our not-quite-two-year-old rounded the corner and caught a glance of that slithering monster. In two-year-old curious fashion, he took a few steps closer to get a better look. “No, stay back! Don’t come, N!” The snake coiled and began to hiss. I was hysterical. That rattle and the 4-foot long, scaly body sat between me and my son, and I felt helpless. N inched a little closer, my screams became more distressed as I could see the snake bare his fangs at that tiny boy.
I sat up straight in bed. I could hear crickets out the window and see the moon through our sliding glass door. No snakes. No children’s laughter. My heart was pounding. Just a dream, right? I jumped out of bed and ran to my boys’ room. Every inch of my body tingled with the aftershock of what I’d just imagined. My eyes strained to see N sleeping soundly through the darkness. Just a dream. A horrible, nasty One. Unfortunately it could very well have been real, but tonight it was just my mind conjuring up what I’ve dreaded so many times.
Sometimes I wonder if worrying is something that automatically comes with motherhood. The baby, the worry, it’s a package deal. Usually it’s just a little nagging feeling on the back of your mind, other times it becomes so strong it overwhelms you. It probably wouldn’t be normal if we didn’t have a little concern, those moments before the nurse hands you that little miracle for the first time, waiting to know results for something questionable about their health, when you wonder if they will ever sleep through the night so you can become sane again. When they walk into their first day of kindergarden, crash their bike for the first time, or get their drivers license, go on their first date, go off to college states away, and become parents of their own. The uncertainty never ends!
Maybe I worry more than the normal mom, but I have a feeling I’m not alone. We love our kids and want the best for them, so naturally we are concerned for their well-being. But on the occasions when we feel overcome with this anxiety, when it is totally out of our control, faith is the only remedy. Faith, hope and love. I came across this quote a while back and have since put it up on our fridge to read every day.
“Worry never robs tomorrow of its sorrow, it only saps today of its joy.”
― Leo Buscaglia
A year ago a rather unpleasant turn of events left it so I was in constant uneasiness for an entire month. I couldn’t get the “what if’s” out of my mind. It involved my health, which has always been just great, but suddenly I wasn’t sure. Suddenly life seemed upside-down and I was running scenarios in my mind. What would my kids do if I were gone? Who would take care of them? Love them? Who would make my husband dinner every night or go on walks with him? It consumed me. I suddenly, for the first time in my life, felt so incredibly mortal. That worry sapped too many days of joy as we waited for answers.
My only comfort that month of waiting was my faith in a loving Heavenly Father. I knew whatever happened, he was in control. He was my anchor, and I realized he was the ONLY anchor that could hold us steady during turbulent times. I was so very thankful for that.
We later found that everything was fine and my worry had all been for naught. I had been robbed of the joy those days could have held.
That snake from my dreams lingers in the back of my mind like the poison it’s venom contained. I won’t allow such things out of my control to sap my days any more. Today I’ve decided to let faith win. Let hope be the deciding factor in how I will live. When we anchor our lives in the one thing that will hold, when we give our worry to the master of all, the fiercest of storms can try beat us down, but we will not sink. We will come out victorious.
So today I choose joy. What about you?
If I could figure out how it insert this movie in, I definitely would. It’s wonderful. It’s 5 minutes and worth the watch. But, with my pathetic technical skill, I don’t know how, so here’s the link:
And an article that has helped me: