These were the days. I was living my life, just being a single mom, working and hanging out with my little family. Ethan almost a year old, and discovering he was deaf. I was dating David, who fell in love with our little family. Life was complicated. Life was a little easier for me than most. I could never accept the sympathetic words of “oh you poor thing, you are a single mom”. It was unmerited on many levels. Trust me, I appreciated the words of encouragement, but I did not have the struggles that most single moms have.
Since I worked for myself as a consultant, I was not locked into specific working hours. I had a home office, a local client who set my office up with crib, baby swing, and playpen, a part-time nanny, and with this kind of blessing I could hardly accept the heartfelt sympathies. My struggles were unseen, not often discussed with others.
The complications of relationship this one little boy caused were the unseen. The breakdown of not having met the expectations put on me as a result of this baby. My inability to handle myself well in those relationships and all the while trying to honor those relationships meant not discussing my problems. I carried those secrets deep in my heart.
I remember waking up every single day, knowing that I had three little sillies that needed me. I needed to stay focused on my work. Working hard to make the provisions for my little family so that I could be that present stay home mommy status. I had to let go of what was hard, and let go of people important in my life, for this one little baby. I could have adopted him off into another family. I could have ignored the decisions around his conception. I could have, and perhaps should have done a lot differently according to the expectations put on me by others. Instead I chose this little boy. I chose to keep the little brother that Elliot and Emily were getting to know, through a bump in my belly.
I chose him over the insecurities and belief system of others. That little boy turns 11 years old this month. That little baby in my arms with the bright face and big blue eyes is Ethan. While others could not bring him into their hearts, God provided others. God provided a family that could come around and endure the complications of Ethan being deaf. Ethan bringing my heart around what it truly means to be committed, as life does continue to press forward. There are always struggles, but dear friends we always have choices. With life, and its struggles I chose the path of keeping this boy in my life. I chose the hard. This is the kind hard that has produced some of life’s greatest joys.
I was a 30 something confused mommy who had only one choice. Trust in God. He’s all you have. And I did. Today as I look at what I worked hard for, I see this little baby boy becoming the young man that God designed. Deaf, bright, academic, and a will that pushes through to find the answers in his own life. I am blessed to have Ethan in my life. That man who fell in love with my family adopted Ethan. Ethan now carries the family Traub name. With the Traub family came grandparents and an aunt and uncle who love him. God’s design and plans for Ethan’s life continue to unfold. I have had the blessing of raising my precious son.
Happy Birthday Ethan. You have a story that some day God is going to use in a powerful way.