Romans 8:38-39 For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Thankful today. So thankful. But not for the things I'm usually thankful for: Ruby's energy, outside playtime, a quick night at home with the kids... Today I'm thankful for that which irritates me. The things that get me all riled up. Things like crazy night schedules that keep Ruby and I awake more than asleep. Things like chemo schedules that change and mess up plans for childcare coverage. Things like unexpectedly long stays at the hospital. Things like Ruby having to be hooked up to fluids longer than I think she should. Those things can really get my blood boiling, thankfully.
Something I realized recently is that God is using those things not only to try and grow me into a more patient, more forgiving, more flexible person, but for a more important reason. He is distracting me.
When I'm focused on things like the schedule I have for Ruby's sleep, or the airplane tickets we've purchased for grandparents, I'm not focusing on other things. Like cancer. It's easy for me to forget sometimes that THAT word even applies to us. I'll hear a commercial on the radio for Team in Training, or see a billboard for childhood cancer research and think, "That must be hard." Then it will hit me - RUBY is that billboard! RUBY is who those runners are fundraising for. And that is a hard road to let your mind wander on.
When I'm focused on things like how much play time Ruby didn't get today because rounds ran late and the nurse didn't hep-lock her on-time, I'm not focusing on other things. Like the fact that our family has been split up more than it's been together in the last six weeks. (By a factor of 1/4!) And thinking about that messes with my mind.
That doesn't mean I'm in denial or haven't gone down 'that road' in my mind. Quite the opposite. I'm an over-thinker who gets lost in my own head more than I should. But the annoyances and frustrations that I get all worked up over seem to clear the cobwebs a bit so that when I do think about the bigger picture, I can do so constructively and with hope.
So thank You God, for giving me all of these little annoyances, all of these little frustrations. It is increasingly obvious to me that God will go to any lengths to prove the above verse. His distractions allow me to digest Ruby's leukemia much easier because I'm able to get all of my frustration out on something as insignificant as a bad night's sleep. That clears out so much of the negative energy so that I can remain positive about the stuff that matters. He will not allow something like cancer to separate us from His love, especially in a season where we need Him so much.