Dion and I were interviewed by Drew Marshall on the radio last Saturday. He asked us a lot of probing and down-right challenging questions about how the Multiple Sclerosis that Dion has impacts our life and faith. Since then I’ve been thinking a lot about what Dion and I choose to share about what is both a fairly public struggle and tender, private pain.
I once led a discussion about what it means to be vulnerable in community settings. Some pushed back on the notion that it is possible to be appropriately vulnerable because of past experiences when it just wasn’t. I understand that. I dug around in some dictionaries and thesauruses and found words like “trustworthy” and “authentic” to describe what I hoped would accompany the kind of vulnerability I wanted to define.
I desire to share authentically about the journey that Dion, Cate and I are on while being careful to hold some of the nitty-gritty for us. The reality is that pretty much everything about the disease of MS sucks, except that it has brought us closer together. As a family we know what it means to struggle. Cate is developing into an incredibly mature almost thirteen year old, in part because of what she is learning about love and compassion through this. God shows up in surprising ways: sometimes big and sometimes almost imperceptibly small. We know we have much: a home, an extended family, a large community of people who love us, mobility aids and good doctors. And we long for more.
The truth is, I would trade places with Dion if I could, even if just for a day so that he might run the way he dreams of. I believe that he could be physically healed and also live in a present where he isn’t. As I once confessed here, it is difficult being the one who is not sick. Sometimes I have no idea what I should say, do or ask for. I know Dion has days where he feels the same.
Thank you for coming alongside us in such a variety of ways and for listening as I fumble around to figure out how and what to share.