For a Split Second, I Grieved My Daughters’ Futures. Then I Realized This.


I stood in the kitchen, the sun shining brightly as it took its last few moments in the sky for the day. The smell of rosemary and garlic was beginning to fill the room, and soft music played in the background. The girls each had a toy they couldn’t seem to get enough of: Ally had a drum Daddy gave her for her birthday, and Bailey Grace had a ball that spins and spins on the high chair in front of her. I poured myself a glass of red wine and continued to stir the risotto in front of me as it bubbled up to the top of the pot.

Minus the cooking part, this is a typical scene in our house on any given night. Many days, I talk to the girls enthusiastically about what I’m doing as I do it, pretending I am on a cooking show of sorts.

But today, for a split second, I grieved.

Suddenly, it hit me. I was teaching my only two daughters how to cook a meal they might never be able to eat, let alone have the ability to cook. Beyond that — as significantly differently-abled as they are with so little independence — the concept of them making a meal for their future husbands was a foreign one.

For a few stirs, I grieved.

And then, I stopped.

I thought of the handful of friends I have who’ve lost their children at young ages to cancer or sudden tragedy. Some of the ones with seemingly “normal” family dynamics had them taken away in an instance. Now, they have no hopes of seeing a daughter walk down the aisle or a son cook a meal for his bride.

Sometimes, in this world of special needs, it is tempting to walk through a moment-by-moment grieving process. There are things in front of us at all times that remind us that others’ “normal” does not line up with our reality.

The child yelling, “Mommy!” at the grocery store.

The little girl running up to her dad on the playground and jumping into his arms.

The snotty-nosed 2-year-old (who can stay snotty for weeks without the thought of a hospital admission) throwing a tantrum at a birthday party.

… this is not our life in the least.

Instead of thinking of the “have-nots,” I try to focus on the “haves.”

I have two precious girls — one is beating a drum in her highchair, and one is squealing at the ball as it spins. Both are perfectly content and joyful exactly the way God created them.

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Two precious daughters that God created and gave to my husband and me. Beauties He entrusted to us to love and care for all the days of their lives or ours.

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This is a true privilege in all its glory.

So today, I will not grieve the fact that my daughters might not get married because there are way too many drums to beat, balls to roll and memories to make in between.

I do not know what’s coming — I never have and I never will — but I celebrate the good life the Lord has given us.

No future wedding required.

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