Caitlin has got to be the bravest and most selfless human being I know.
At her 3 years of age, Caitlin has underwent numerous IV insertions, NGT insertion, countless pricks and extractions, tranfused blood and platelets for how many times, stayed in the hospital for more than 50 days (and counting) and yet have no diagnosis of what she is going through.
Looking at her and comparing her from how she used to be broke my heart in so many ways. It was painful to see her body frail and to see her sad disposition.
I complained to God. She didn’t.
Not to exaggerate, this kid never complained about her situation. She would obey the doctors, her parents, the nurses everytime they explained things to be done to her. When NGT was inserted through her nose, I was shocked that she didn’t struggle. She cried because of the uncomfortable feeling but when her doctor said “Swallow Caitlin, you’ll be okay”, she swallowed. Then we went back to her regular activity.
Caitlin’s heart of obedience was so overwhelming and humbling at the same time.
Obedience at this point in time isn’t recognized as something good. More often than not, obedience is deemed corny by most people. What humbled me is the fact that a 3 year-old modeled obedience to me, our family (and probably now the whole world). Doctors have expressed their appreciation that Caitlin is an “easy” patient. To be honest I still find myself contemplating about the whole concept of obedience and I couldn’t believe that I continue to learn from my 3 year-old niece.
Like any other human being, Caitie struggled to keep her positive disposition.
We reached a point wherein Caitie wouldn’t talk to us and she stopped smiling. It hurt us so much because we understood that she is indeed sad about her situation. Our love tank became empty that we couldn’t fill her own. The whole family prayed for each other, communicated openly, encouraged one another, received prayers from family, friends and strangers that our love tanks were filled. By God’s grace, we were able to share more to Caitie.
When Caitie started to ask for her activities and she was able to release her emotions through art, she communicated more and smiled often. I will not forget that night when her parents had to go to the billing station and I had to be left with her and my Dad. Caitie saw that my brother handed me food and told me that I should eat it while it’s hot. I wasn’t exactly hungry so I told my dad that he can have the food.
Suddenly, a little voice said, “But I want to feed you, Auntin.”
At that time, she wasn’t allowed to eat because she was being prepared for a procedure and I was so amazed by how she put me first despite her situation.
I thought to myself, “What a selfless little kid.”
How many times have I thought of myself over the important people in my life? I was so touched, overwhelmed and humbled by Caitlin’s gesture because she was okay. It was okay for her to see her loved ones eat even if she couldn’t.
Caitie reminds me of Christ’s character every single day.
I haven’t been keen in making resolutions. My desire is to simply know Christ intimately and improve my relationship with Him because Mum always told me that when you seek Him and obey Him, you will eventually learn to align your plans to His will. Caitie always loved Bible stories. Her favorite to name a few are Noah’s Ark, Jonah and the Whale, the little girl who was healed, David and Goliath. She would make me read those and through it, I am reminded of how God takes care of His children. With my family’s situation, I have no choice but to cling to Him. Coincidence? I think not.
Ecclesiastes 3:11 says, “He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the human heart; yet no one can fathom what God has done from beginning to end.”
And because at the end of the day, “Whoever claims to live in him must live as Jesus did”, 1 John 2:6.
Just how Caitie has been living hers.
*Blog post originally written last February 2016