I had a panic attack this morning.
People say that sometimes when they get stressed out about something. That's not what I'm saying.
I had a literal wild-eyed, can't breathe, chest exploding panic attack.
I had trouble getting myself to sleep last night which is normally not an issue for me at all. All the things left to do before we travel were swirling in my brain which led to thoughts of actual travel which led to thoughts of leaving the seven kids that we currently parent, here, while we're gone.
And I became anxious.
A half of muscle relaxer helped me drift off and I was awakened a few hours later by my tiny princess calling, "Mommy....Mommy....MOMMY!" Unsure of what prompted her need for me (and entirely too tired to care) I brought her in bed with us where she shared my pillow (read kicked and punched me) for the rest of the night.
I laid there and began to wonder, "What happens when she calls Mommy and I'm not there to respond? Will the very capable adults who are caring for her in our absence be able to comfort her? What if she gets sick? What about all the things that can happen to her while we are a whole ocean away? What if our plane crashes?
What if she chokes on a banana?!?
The imagination can be a dangerous thing. Instead of reigning those thoughts in, I allowed them to move from child to child, lingering for a bit on Eon as I'm acutely aware of the recent losses we've had in the Down syndrome community, until finally:
Obviously, there's a reason Paul tells us to take every thought captive and make it obedient to Christ (2 Corinthians 10:5). I had that thought briefly enter and exit when the anxiety was still in it's early stage. By the time I'd reached full blown panic, it was too late. It was all I could do to breathe.
What I'd forgotten and what I am reminding myself of even now is that I'm not even in control here, on the same continent, heck, even in the same room! These children are not my own. They never have been.
The One who created them has numbered their days. He has numbered mine as well. I trust Him. I have no choice.
As much as I want to plan for every possibility and prepare my heart for every outcome, I can't. And I will lose my mind if I continue trying.
I was reminded of this post I wrote three years ago when I apparently had a lot more wisdom. Peace on earth, indeed.
For now, I'm working on breathing, casting my care on Him, and making lists...lots and lots of lists.
Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all your understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. (Phillipians 4:6-7)