I took Collin to school this morning and we hadn't been there long when the neurologist's office called. I left Collin with his teacher and excused myself to the hallway, because I knew it was going to be about the MRI and I wanted a minute to myself just in case. We've never had good luck with MRIs. Collin's first MRI was incorrectly read as normal, his second one showed low white matter, and his third, in January, showed a possible decrease in white matter from the previous one. This MRI was to determine whether we were facing further degeneration. We were praying that no change had taken place.
Change had occurred, though. For the better. Turns out, Collin's brain has started myelinating faster, which means that his white matter has INCREASED. Not decreased. Not held steady. Increased. Apparently, Dr. Awesome said that the MRI 'looked pretty good,' which, as you know, is comparable to someone else doing a big elbow-flapping happy dance.
We also had done an MRI of the lumbar spine because Collin was born with a fairly deep sacral dimple and there has always been question as to whether he has a tethered spinal cord, which would likely mean surgery at age 2 or 3 to 'release' the end of the spine. That MRI came back completely normal.
I went back in to the classroom and just sat there feeling completely overwhelmed with thankfulness. I was surrounded by all of these amazing moms and their sweet children in a place where Collin feels welcome and free to try things and I had this huge, glowing, happy news I was carrying around.
It's true that, in a classroom of children with various disabilities, Collin was by far the most delayed. Even though Collin's MRI is improved, it's nowhere near normal. I know that our situation would not be one anyone would choose. If I had been able to imagine that moment in the classroom back when I was pregnant or before, I would have found the very thought abhorrent and terrifying. And I guess that that's when it hit me that this is one of the biggest ways that all of our prayers for help these past couple of years have been answered. Nothing circumstantial was taken away - no hardship magically disappeared. But God spent these months reworking our hearts to bring us to the point where, instead of raging that we even have to worry about EEGs and MRIs or lamenting that Collin needs to go to a school for the visually impaired, we can truly experience contentment and gratefulness in our situation. Not to say we don't still have bad days or weeks. We do. But I'm guessing this is what it means in the bible when it promises that God will work out all things for the good of those who believe in Him - who keep looking for him even when it makes no sense or feels pointless. Not that everything will be smooth or that you will prosper in the way you hope/expect (coughJoelOsteencough). But that when things do go wrong, even very very wrong, it won't mean destruction via despair or pain. It will signal the beginning of beautiful things - maybe tough and unexpected, but beautiful nonetheless.