Two weeks before Christmas, my son came down with what I suspected was Strep throat. His best friend had just had it, and my son was exhibiting the classic symptoms.
I kept him home from school and scheduled an appt to confirm a diagnosis. As we were heading to the doctor that afternoon, my son told me he was having chest pains and had been having them all morning. Of course this concerned me and I told him we would have to mention this to the doctor at our visit.
After mentioning this symptom to the doctor, she began to question my son about the frequency and quality of the pain. During this questioning, I came to learn that this was not the first time he felt this pain, and that he first felt it when he was running in his school’s annual fundraising run, where he completed nearly 3 miles.
Although the doctor suspected he was okay based on her exam, she suggested we go to the hospital for an EKG just to be thorough. Of course panic snuck in at the prospect of my 8 year old needing an EKG, but I managed to remain relatively calm in order to help him through his own fears surrounding the test.
I operate on the assumption that “no news is good news”, so when days went by with no phone call regarding the results, I assumed the test had been negative. That was until, approximately one week after the test, I received several messages on my home answering machine one evening. These were messages from my son’s doctor’s office as well as the hospital. My son’s EKG came back with an abnormal result, and they wanted him to see an electro-physiologist for further testing and evaluation.
This was now one week before Christmas, and 2 days before his class nativity play, school Christmas music program, and class Christmas party. These are all events I was looking forward to, and suddenly, a black cloud descended upon each of them.
My emotions fluctuated between a calm knowing that he was okay and an intense feeling that my worst fears could become reality. Between my tears, I googled like crazy, hoping to find evidence that an abnormal EKG can be normal in kids. Then I prayed that God not take another child away from me. I really got myself into quite a state.
Eventually I was hit with four realizations that came through so clear and strong:
- First, I was operating with minimal information, yet assuming the worse, imagining my son being given some horrible diagnosis, not being able to participate in sports, and maybe something even worse. I was living in a supposed future that looked very grim, instead of being in the present moment with the little information I did have. I know how unpleasant and self-fulfilling living in the future can be, and this was surely no way to view this situation.
- Second, I realized that I wanted to wallow in grief for a while. It felt good to cry. I needed to be with my pain and fear for a while, and that it is okay that I felt like that.
- Third, I knew there had to be a lesson here that I wasn’t seeing.
- Lastly, I wondered how I had manifested this into my reality.
Let me explain that last point. I am of the belief that anything that occurs in our life we have created on some level, whether it happens directly to us or to someone that we love. This includes the good and the not so good.
You may wholeheartedly disagree with me on this point. Or you may have some suspicion of this truth, but no real proof for yourself that convinces you. It’s all okay. What’s true for me doesn’t have to be true for you.
Now, this belief did not develop based on some book I read or some guru saying it, although I have heard and read others making this assertion. However, for me, it has come based on numerous demonstrations of this truth in my own life as well as in other’s lives that I’ve spent time with.
You see, when it comes to the medical issue with my son, I realized that this isn’t the first time I’ve worried about his heart. Not that he’s ever had a problem in the past, but, the thing is that I’ve always held a fairly irrational fear related to the stories you hear about the young athletes that are seemingly fit and healthy one minute, and the next minute are lying lifeless on the field. Although this occurrence is a rare one, these stories have always touched me deeply, and when I realized my son was going to be a sports guy, I immediately took on this worry as my own. I even got a doctor to give me an order for an echocardiogram for my son when he was six, for no other reason but because of the fear I held (I never did have the test done).
So, back to my role in the manifestation of my son’s abnormal EKG. Because of this abnormal reading, we had to put our son through some rigorous testing to ensure that his heart is strong and healthy despite the reading. Through it all, I managed to get control of my fears and made a decision to only allow myself to see my son as the strong and healthy boy that he is. I refused to allow any other image of him to enter my mind. In addition, through the process of the testing and my interactions with the specialist, I was able to ask questions about the young athlete issue and express my fear where my son was concerned. The wonderful thing was that the specialist was able to see all of the structures and functions of my son’s heart, and the abnormality that causes the majority of those sudden deaths in young athletes is not present in my son.
So did I manifest this issue to finally bring me to state of peace on the young athlete issue, a fear I’ve held ever since I realized my son was going to be participating in sports? Or is it just a coincidence that through the testing my son required they were able to confirm it would be unlikely for him to suffer a similar fate? Only God really knows, but I feel empowered knowing how truly powerful my thoughts are. Now, if only I can more consciously use them to positively impact my life and the life of my family, rather than creating potentially negative circumstances! That is my resolution for this year.
My son still has to endure one more test at the end of the month, but it is my deep knowing that everything will come out fine. I can only see my son as the strong and healthy boy that he is – no other image can come to mind.
As you start this New Year, I challenge you to become aware of how your thinking might be influencing the circumstances in your life, even as they relate to your kids. It’s amazing the lessons and personal growth we sometimes experience as a result of the situations in our children’s lives. The cool thing is that the more aware you are of your thoughts, the more empowered you will be to use your thoughts to positively impact those that you love.
What do you think of this article? What thoughts were conjured up as a result? Please share your thoughts with me by commenting on this blog post.