A Promise

Today was the first day of Rosh Hashana, the Jewish New Year and it certainly went off with a bang. On my way to drop Isabelle off at her Nana’s, I turned too soon and caught my right rear tire on the brick wall that runs parallel down the driveway. The car jerked and I instantly knew I had either hit the wall or the curb. After viewing the blown tire and its gaping hole I hysterically called my husband.
I had plans. I was going to drop Izzie off, attend an open house at Addie’s preschool and then head to services for the holiday. My parents ended up picking Liz and I up, dropping me off at the school and I walked to services after the Open house. No big deal. I was happy that I was able make part of it considering.
Services for the holiday are really long. They can be up to 3 hours if the Rabbi isn’t paying attention and today was no exception. This was my first High Holy Day that I was going to be observing since Isabelle was born. Last year at this time we were in lock down. Thinking of how angry I was at God a year ago and in spite of that anger, what a miracle Isabelle has turned out to be made me well up unexpectedly. In spite of that, she is still here. With us. Wow.
The sermon today was about a promise and the environment. Don’t ask- I too felt that it was a stretch but I liked the promise piece so I am focusing on that. The Torah portions we go over during Rosh Hashanah are the story of Issac and his family. Basically, Abraham had two wives. Or was it a wife and a concubine who gave him a son. He had two women- one childless whom he was bound to, and the other who was a servant but a fertile one at that. His first wife was worried about a promise that was given to them about her sons future. She wanted him to kick the other woman to the curb. He did, and she wandered about with her boy until they were both dying of thirst. The second wife was scared that her promise that was given to her about her sons future wasn’t going to happen. Both mothers scared and having little faith even though the promises had been made by credible angels, acted out of desperation.
I thought about what we have been promised with Isabelle’s Fontan. If she makes it through the first surgery, the chances were higher she could get through the second. If she got through the second, than she can get through the third. After the Fontan is done, she will be ok and we could go for years without another surgery. She could have a normal life for a while. That is one promise. The other promise is science could come up with a better treatment than these surgeries. They are considered palliative – they are not a cure for HLHS. Who knows what advancements could come out in her lifetime? As I sat in the sanctuary of this beautiful church (that’s another story), I wondered if I could accept those promises and hope science could be where I need it to be. That would require faith. Here’s the thing- an angel didn’t pass the message on from God. The promise wasn’t followed by a burning bush or anything. It was given by a doctor in a white coat who saw many of these children on a daily basis. It’s scary to put all your faith eggs into one basket. If I am to have any kind of sanity, I have to accept them. A promise is a promise.

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