When I mow the lawn I have some time to think. With a cancer kid, free time to think is often a curse. As I circled my yard it struck me like a ton of bricks:
“My son has cancer!”
That’s life for the parent of a cancer kid, though. Life is regularly interrupted with the realization that, unbelievably, your child has the C word.
My mind, like that of other parents, quickly goes to “that place,” where your child’s mortality stands front and center. And I thought as tears streamed down my face in my front yard, “Will Harrison ever mow a lawn? Will he grow up and own a home, have a family, be a husband and father?”
And then I considered, “Does he even need to learn things that will help him later in life?”
Parenting is mostly about preparing kids for adulthood. Most kids reach adulthood. Most kids with cancer don’t. Coming to grips with that is tough for a dad who would step in front of a locomotive for any of his kids.
I’d love to say that after fifteen months into the battle I don’t collapse under the weight of my son’s mortality, but I do. And so do tens of thousands of other parents of kids with cancer. We fight the temptation to let our minds wander, but invariably it happens. Dads want to see their sons grow into young men. We want to teach them to throw a spiral,
…to hit a curve ball,
…even to mow the lawn.
We want to know that when we kick them out of the nest they’ll be responsible adults.
So when cancer threatens to prevent that, we worry. Fear and despair can immobilize us.
As you pray for all parents of children with cancer, moms and dads alike, you can pray for the grace to resist fear.
Many times in Scripture the angel of the Lord says, “Fear not.” I’ll think on that for a while.