Dear Mom in the waiting room, I see you.
I see you waiting in the trenches of a possible diagnosis and wading through the layers of emotions that this brings for you.
I feel for you in the places where the unknown shouts in volumes the “what ifs” and a need to separate any anxieties becomes a pressing mental battle.
I hear your prayers and your cries for how this change can bring a different way for your child and your family, and may you write these words down to remember the way your process of the heart is indeed part of the journey you are being led on.
I know that the anxieties of your child’s process and your mama heart desiring to heal and to restore any ailments beats on like a resounding drum. I see you extending coping strategies to help speak louder over any fears and how asking helpful questions prepares both of your minds to face the unknown of it.
As you await the testings and the procedures that will give you the answers to what you are facing, allow me to speak these three pieces of encouragement to you from a mama who’s awaiting the diagnosis answer as well.
Give space to hear others’ stories amidst your own and allow each story to hold its place in the process.
I encountered a fellow mom going through a similar situation in the waiting room who taught me this. Her extended presence of compassion didn’t minimize our story compared to the grandness of her own. She modeled the way it looks to give empathy, no matter the story. She faces BIG, scary things every day and yet she embraced my son with a tenderness of what a change of lifestyle could mean for his mindset. To witness her ability to join in on our story, amidst the difficulties of her own, was a beautiful act of empowering motherhood.
It is true that as moms, it is helpful to apply the perspective of emotions to your situation; however, don’t allow yourself to minimize your story because you feel someone has it harder than you. This change of normal is a continuing process and giving yourself the space to meet YOUR emotions on it will empower you to face the dynamics with a stronger acceptance.
Celebrate the wins as you grieve the losses.
She spoke of her grieving places with an inspiring ability to accept the things you cannot retrieve back and yet took time to acknowledge the places where blessings have been present amidst the losses. Thank you for speaking so authentically about the realness of what you face and modeling a heart settled at peace with the journey.
When life seems to take more than it gives, allow yourself the mental retreat of claiming the wins in this chapter as you grieve your losses. As your heart struggles, list out a few small victories that you can speak over your situation and focus there when the story feels too big to bear.
Know your trusted sources for words of advice and do not allow every voice to be heard.
A big thanks to her for the reminder that when a mother is facing a new diagnosis, Google is not always a friend, nor are people who have zero knowledge of the journey being faced. It is indeed a place of wisdom to know where helpful information comes from (your physician/nurse) and to lean on moms for comfort who understand the dynamics and are emotionally present to meet you in the stage you’re in.
Moms who face these new waters, I am swimming in them with you and support you on this path. May your story be one of resilience, bravery, and grace as you tend to the dynamics of your season.