How Will You Serve?

Before I had any of my kids, I had a tubal pregnancy. After 3 long weeks pain, ER and doctor visits, it ruptured. It took 5 days for the doctors to determine what had happened and by that point I had lost half of my blood volume. I was rushed to the hospital for a blood transfusion and emergency surgery.

I remember sitting in the doctor's office having the ultrasound. I was soo excited to see my little peanut on the screen. It would have made all of the pain and nausea worth it. I remember the nurse saying, "Is that the baby right there?" and then the doctor replying, "No,there is no baby, I'm not sure what that is." (It turns out it was a ball of blood.) I was shocked. As the doctor was caught up in the emergency of the situation, I was finding out, in a matter of seconds, the baby that I thought was growing inside of me, was not there. As I recovered from my surgery in the maternity ward, I could hear babies crying in the rooms surrounding mine.

After I was released from the hospital, physically I recovered quite well, but emotionally, I was sad and lonely. We were in school, at a new place and my family was hundreds of miles away. We would have had to deal with our grief all alone, if it wasn't for our church family. For a whole week, at lunch time, a "sister" from our church showed up with lunch and ate with me. Sometimes she did the dishes or took out the trash, but mostly, she took an hour out of her day to let me know that others were aware of my pain and I was loved. I didn't have great physical needs, but emotionally, this was just what I needed. I've often thought of that time in my life, mostly because if I had been asked what I needed, I would have never asked for that, because I didn't know I needed it. It took the insight of someone on the outside, to stop, look and think. I was changed by that experience. Not only did I indeed make it through this hard time (and end up with 3 adorable, although BUSY boys) but also I learned that often times, the person who needs service the most doesn't really know what they need and it is up to me (or everyone else) to stop, look and listen.

This year marks the 9th anniversary of September 11th, the day that America came together as one and we all became "brothers" and "sisters". Appropriately so, it has also been decided that in order to remember what happened that day, it has become a National Day of Service. There are countless organizations all across the country that are coming together to find ways to serve others. My family (even Rascal, my 2 year) has been collecting school supplies for less fortunate children and supplies for our troops. We will spend the Saturday assembling boxes of goodies for those who keep us safe and letting our friends, loved ones and those who will become our friends, "shop" for the things they need as school begins.

As a society we could all benefit from thinking less about ourselves and more about how we can help those around us. So, I challenge you to stop, look, listen and plan the ways your family can serve on 9/11. There is no better exercise for the heart than reaching down and lifting someone up.

Whaddya think?

1 comment:

  1. Reading this posting brought back my emotional rollercoaster when I found out that my "baby" had passed away and had no heartbeat. Being sent home with the "fetus" still inside me, waiting, was the hardest thing I ever had to go through. A sister who lived two doors down (whom I wasn't very close to) came over and cried with me for two hours.

    I too have benefitted from the service of others and look forward to giving back as well! I didn't know 9/11 was a day dedicated to service... Now I'll have something planeed too! :) Thanks Shay for this beautiful posting!