I will never forget the night I was writing a research paper on Howard Gardner’s multiple intelligence theory, and I came across the following quote…
A child is…
A butterfly in the wind,
Some can fly higher than others;
but each one flies the best it can.
Why compare one against the other?
Each one is different!
Each one is special!
Each one is beautiful!
After reading the above, I could not even continue writing for the night. I instead, just sobbed. I cried because I wanted everyone to understand this concept, I wanted everyone to embrace the differences of people, and I wanted everyone to be loved no matter what.
Last Friday night, this quote came back to me. I was holding a very sick little boy in a clinic room right across the border in the Dominican Republic. Jean had a fever, was coughing and vomiting, and his breathing was labored. He had pneumonia. His tiny fragile body was fighting once again. He was hooked up to an IV, was given many meds, and even received oxygen. Jean had about eight seizures during our three night stay as well. My heart broke for him, but I was so calm. I knew that so many people were praying for him, and I knew the Lord was protecting him. I knew he was going to make it.
Jean is still recovering from the pneumonia, but he is doing better. I am still praying for direction as I know his cerebral palsy makes everything a bit more challenging. His lungs are still not clear, and he still has a fever off and on. I faithfully believe that he is going to make a full recovery.
I am grateful that I am able to comfort Jean in this time of his life. I pray that he feels my presence, and I hope that he feels loved every day of his life. We have formed a bond, and are making memories each and every day. There is a special song that I’ve shared with him since the day I met him, “Ooh Child” by Beth Orton. It’s simply gorgeous, and calms both of us instantly. One day there will be a dance that goes along with the song for little Jean. When I did not think I could possibly love this precious child anymore, my heart grew at least ten times in size. This is what I find myself saying to God…
What is it about this one? Out of all the children that have crossed my path, why is it Jean that makes me fall to my knees and just cry out to you? I am not worthy to take care of this child, but somehow you have become my hands and feet in the process. You have opened up my heart, you have calmed my nerves, you have given me wisdom, and you have blessed me abundantly. I pray that I make you proud, and I thank you for allowing me to serve you in such an incredible way. I couldn’t ask for anything more!
The day that my beloved stepfather passed away, I saw a butterfly flying at the very scene of his death. It was a reminder of life, and I will never forget that moment. It was God’s way of telling me that everything was going to be alright. Three years later, Jean is that sweet, sweet butterfly that flies at his own height. He is different, he is special, and he is beautiful!