God Loves Him More

Wednesday, October 13, 2021

A few months ago, right around the time Hank was due actually, Joe and I had to apply for assistance for Bert through the state. It was something that we were fairly certain we would not receive but that we had to apply for as the first step toward getting Bert some other things he needed. 

"Application" is a small word to use for what this really was: a 60-plus page binder that included information on our finances, Bert's medical history, his therapies, etc. It involved his pediatrician filling out several forms and writing letters, us collecting his various medical records and reports, and me collating everything into a binder and driving it to the correct office. It was one of those situations where we were warned that one tiny detail being off, such as me dating one of my signatures 6/10/21 and Joe dating his signature 6/11/21, would be enough to get rejected.

After a few weeks of filling out forms, driving forms to his pediatrician and then picking them up, and collecting necessary documentation, I finished putting everything into the binder, hole punching all the documents and creating a table of contents. Then there was only one thing left: the cover page to slip into the transparent binder cover. I put Bert's full name on it, and then I went to type in his case number, as instructed. As I sat there looking at that page, it made me sad to see Bert's life reduced to a multi-digit case number. So before I hit print, I did one more thing: I inserted a picture of Bert. 

It was not a perfect photo, not professional or even lit particularly well, but it showed that he is a human being, a little boy who is loved by a lot of people. Bert and I drove his binder to the office a couple of days before it was due and handed it off to the woman who met us there. When I got home, I emailed our caseworker to confirm it had been dropped off, and she said, "I got it. It had Robert's picture on it." Yes, it did. 

Any parent wants his or her child to be truly seen, but I think when your child has a disability and there's far more paperwork and assessments and meetings, you are a little extra scared that your precious baby will be reduced to less than a person. Indeed, it is easy to live in constant fear that Bert will be seen as just another patient, just another case number, just another disabled person in need of help. (In some especially scary cases, as just a burden on the state.) But as I was driving Bert to drop off that binder that day, I realized something: I love my child so much, but God loves him more. 

God loves him more. 

God loves him more, and God desires my son's good more than I do. Of course He does, He made Bert in His own image. 

So now every time I have to fight the hospital to allow both Bert's parents to accompany him to his MRI, when I have to fight the state of Georgia to provide Bert with the services he's entitled to, when I have to fight my own (crippling) fear for Bert's future, especially as he will soon age out of early intervention, I hear God's voice whisper to me: "You love him, but I love him more." 


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