Typing the title for this post was very surreal for me. Can it really be that long ago that Abbie was given back to us on a beautiful Monday afternoon in May? Thinking back over the minutes that blurred into hours, which melted into days, months…and now years…there are some things that absolutely amaze me.
First is how utterly brave, strong and stubborn our girl has been through this whole experience. There is not one ounce of quit in her, and she has not batted her lavishly-long eyelashes at obstacles that make grown men cower. I wish I could say that we have done our best to support her through this, but in the most difficult moments, it has been her light, her smile, her tenacity keeping us afloat.
It surprises and humbles me that Abbie still has so many faithful blog followers. I’ve heard from some families in similar situations that “after so many years no one cares any more.” We are profoundly blessed by posts at this site, emails asking “where’s an update?’, and crossing paths at the supermarket with folks that already know all about our death-defying snowmachine outing or Abbie’s latest accomplishment. Even more than the support and encouragement this gives us, the power of your prayers continues to change Abbie’s life to this day. It saved her five years ago, and it is making a twisted path straight for her even now.
I am also acutely aware tonight of how many, many talented and compassionate professionals have come into our lives, and joined our team. I cannot imagine not having their expertise and guidance, but also cannot fathom not knowing them as people, as friends. This list is long, but I must recognize: Jayna, Lisa, Lynette, Patty, Drs. Lau, Tran, Yim, Burkhalter, Durkin and King, who are my “Honolulu Hui”. I, of course, must give a special mahalo to Dr. Jerry Tennant — doctor, innovator, friend — we wouldn’t be where we are with out you, Marilyn and your staff. And, Linda Kane, whose life truly is given to bringing “hope and a future” to families.
Five years ago I was worried about the survival not only of my daughter, but of my family. It was impossible for me to see how we were going to get from point A to point B — some days, I couldn’t even see the next step. God has been faithful and generous with his grace. When I pictured what my family would be like five years and one day ago, the portrait I imagined bears very little resemblance to today’s reality. But, I can say that not only did we survive, we are thriving. Second only to Abbie’s progress, this is the most profound evidence of God’s presence and work in our lives.
Finally, as I stop reflecting and resume looking forward, I am startled to find that I am filled with anticipation and excitement. It is stunning to find such joy in a journey that logically should be so wearisome and sad. God doesn’t waste pain and sorrow. I look forward to reaping what has been sown in tears, and am grateful that He has allowed us such an extraordinary adventure with Him.
Thank you for your friendship, fellowship, support and unceasing prayers — a testimony of God’s love poured out through people, of which we are the most grateful recipients.