Friday, December 24, 2021

Dear Daughter, Get Well Soon!

So it is a most unusual Christmastime in this most unusual year for our family.

This beautiful young woman turned 23 years old on Tuesday. It was her birthday, and we hope and pray that God grant her abundant grace and blessings for the year ahead. But it could not be said that it was - in any ordinary, conventional sense - a "happy" birthday.

Agnese, my oldest daughter, whom I love so much, has been ill for more than a week.

It is definitely NOT Covid. She tested negative, and in any case the symptoms are entirely different. (I won't give many details, even though for all practical purposes this blog has become little more than a private journal: it no longer has many readers, and I haven't posted about this on my much-more-widely-viewed social media platforms, and I won't until we know more about what's going on.) But she has been in the hospital since Tuesday, requiring medication to stabilize blood pressure and normalize kidney function. Meanwhile, a multitude of tests are being run to determine the cause of these abnormalities and other symptoms of her persistent illness.

Most likely, all of this sounds much worse than it actually is. There are many (unusual but resolveable) circumstances that might be causing these problems. Doctors, as yet, do not have answers. We can't really speculate, and I'm counting on the discretion and courtesy of the very few people who still see these blog posts.

The main reason I'm writing about this is that I just need to "get it out" on (virtual) "paper" so that I can put it into some kind of context for myself. In the same way, I wanted to make the graphic, above, because it's something I do for my kids (usually) on their birthdays.

I am a weak and sinful man, prone to worry. I want things to be "back to normal" (indeed, normal - at this time in my life, with all the changes, with the passing of the generations, the 'loss and gain' that humbles us but also makes our hearts grow - "normal" is dramatic enough for my nerves).

But beyond all this, I love my daughter. I love my family. I know that God is all-wise and all-good and that He loves us. Whatever comes is woven into His mysterious plan which is shaped by His immense love for us, the love we celebrate in these days as we rejoice in the gift of His Son - the birth of Jesus.

I hope and pray that Agnese comes home soon.