With permission from my very dear friend, Paula Kaplan Rodgers, I share this blog spot. Her story touched my heart and I wanted to share it with yours.
Sixteen years ago, today, God oversaw the delivery of the gift he had for our family, Josiah. As I reflect back to that day, really that week, if I was a gambler then I'd say the odds were against us for best outcome. At some point during delivery my placenta tore and Josiah was in distress. My oxygen levels were low to the point that I would fall asleep while trying to deliver and they would awaken me to push. Finally, they gave me oxygen and got Josiah out. His Apgar scores were low and he was unable to cry. They immediately began working on him w/in hours he had been transported to CHKD. I had not even held him yet. What results in death in many cases (placenta abratia), did not have that grip on Josiah. Instead he recovered quickly and by day 4 of his CHKD stay the doctors discharged him home in perfect health. The story doesn't end there - on that day we had the second event that could have been fatal and deeply tragic. Kristin and Katlin (with the help of Keri) had bought the wooden stork to be put in our front yard to announce the birth of Josiah. We went outside to take a picture in front of the stork. In what seemed like a finally orchestrated moment, Katlin walked in front of Josiah (who was in my arms) when a car passed by and shot a high-powered BB gun. That BB hit and penetrated into Katlin's back. We were so blessed - the ER doctor told us had that BB had hit just a little bit higher or over, Katlin could have been paralyzed or even had died. Instead it was superficial. If Katlin had not been where she was in that moment, the BB would have hit Josiah and he would not have survived it.
This has been one pattern I have witnessed in Josiah’s life. There have been obstacles that he should not be able to get over, and yet time and time again he has achieved success despite the obstacle. He never consider the obstacle as one. For example: Josiah was born with my gift of music – those of you who know me realizes that although I can sing okay, sort of, with somebody, there would never be a time that I could sing solo. Josiah never saw himself as a singer without potential; instead he set goals that were higher than I could ever imagine he would reach. Those of you who know Josiah have seen him realize this dream on stage time and time again, most recently in the role of Joseph in Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat.
Academically, the same thing. Josiah was gifted with a strong brain. At the same time he was gifted with my gross motor and fine motor skills. We always saw his strength academically and then one day we received the results of a test we had done for the gifted program and it showed his percentile in visual perception was very low – skewing the results of the test. Wow! We knew he had suffered from tremendous headaches almost daily. We had taken him for different tests through the years. The physicians were unable to find anything wrong. The administrators of the test suggested we send him to Dr. Westcott, an eye therapist. There we learned Josiah had an eye tracking problem. A year of therapy strengthen those muscles and he went from reading 10 minutes a day before getting a headache to reading 1,000 pages a week if he wanted to. Josiah never saw himself as having any learning problems or reading issues. He just took life one day at a time achieving the high goals he set for himself.
See the pattern? There is a phrase – what Satan meant for evil, God meant for good. Life doesn’t come easy for Josiah, in the same way it doesn’t come easy for any of us. But Josiah doesn’t look at himself as one with limitations or handicaps. Instead, he sees life as an opportunity and there is nothing that he sets his mind on that he cannot achieve. God has blessed him with this gift.
I love my son! I thank God for all 16 years – and look forward too many more.