I believe in the Paradoxical Nature of LIfe

Raymone - Davenport, Iowa
Entered on April 8, 2008
Age Group: 50 - 65
Themes: family, illness


I believe in the paradoxical nature of life. I expect things to go right in my world and work hard to make sure that happens. I study problems and make calculated assumptions from that exercise. Sometimes I am pleased and sometimes I am disappointed in my efforts. In either outcome, I am amazed at the surprises that await.

My granddaughter Ella was born with Noonan’s Syndrome. It is quite rare

and many disabilities come with this unfortunate condition. A brain tumor,

tethered spinal cord, deafness, an unclosed valve in the heart at birth, curled

up little toes on each foot, developmental delays, and one kidney that doesn’t


Before Ella entered this world her parents had been warned about many of the

challenges she might have to live with. The day finally came. Both sets of grandparents and other family members waited at Children’s Hospital for the much-anticipated arrival; we were amazed at her beauty. She had dark hair and eyes; a precious package that had been carefully wrapped and cared for over the previous 9 months.

Jesus once said, “Those who loose their life will find it,” I lost a part of my life the day she was born. As the days and months passed there were too many hospitalizations to count. With each new challenge that felt like defeat, a fixed persuasion of victory seemed to be waiting around the next corner.

I prayed the child would change, but the child changed me. And, she has continued to change me for 8 quizzical years from her frail little body. Her smile is as powerful as the sun on a budding flower. Her skinny legs are a joy to my eyes as I watch the power she has in them when she resists her parent’s discipline. Her mission in life seems to be turning on every light in the house; this has taught me to convert entirely to energy saving bulbs. She lights up my life with her mischievous ways, like pulling

the chair out from behind me when I plan to sit down.

When Ella was born, I lost my life as I knew it, and found another. She was the teacher, guide, and model, I became the student. Such is the paradox of life.