The Key to History Is Eternity

by Anniel2/27/17
Each of us, in my opinion, is an eternal being with lives that have meaning beyond ourselves. I have written before of our granddaughter Eliza, known as Red, and the possibilities of her life (ST, Looking Backward to Understand the Present, 8/6/16).

Red has many genetic markers that make her unique. Her parents, our son, David and his wife, Jessie, have finally been able to get her into a testing program that indicates her life will be more stringently tried in the future, as will her parents and siblings lives.

Until a week ago we knew she had the following genetic markers:

Bright red curly hair, when no one else in the family has it
Epicanthic folds on her inner eyelids (downward folds)
Curved up outer eyelids
Late speaking (hardly understandable at times)
Cleft soft palate, so small the docs don’t want to operate on it if they don’t have to
Losing baby teeth very early, with new teeth also coming in early
Railroad track earlobes
Single palmar transverse creases, (palms of both hands have only one straight line across, used to be called a Simian Crease)
No sense of danger to herself, or to anyone else for that matter
Isn’t defiant but cannot be effectively disciplined
But with all this she is extremely intelligent, in odd ways

Red has been undergoing intensive speech therapy in a special preschool, and tentatively diagnosed as “autistic,” which seems to be everyone’s catch all diagnosis these days. Then David suggested she might be what is known as a “mosaic”. (All the markers can be googled), so the family requested further genetic screening.

To just finish this out. About four weeks ago a savvy med tech heard a previously undetected heart murmur and the docs did ultrasound heart imaging and an MRI, and found some very serious problems that may be able to be solved by surgery, or not. Both of Red’s heart chambers are fused in one, and. . . I think I will just tell you the names of what she has. Google if need be. She has:

Aortic aneurism, rough wall, which has been imaged as both heart chambers fused into only one, called a Bicuspid Aortic Valve, that may require surgery to place two new chambers or valves, or both
Left ventricular hypertocalulation (LVHT)
Spongy muscle
May need heart transplant down the road
Connective tissue disorder, which is really a Collagen disorder

The geneticists think Red may wind up with a syndrome all her own.

David says he’s doing OK, which means he’s hanging on by a thread, and the docs have decided on a complete genetics work up on the whole family, maybe including all the cousins. Red seems to be normal for her and hasn’t slowed down any. David says she seems happy and fine.

That doesn’t mean I am. But being philosophical seems the best bet we have. If you read about Red in that first article you might remember that when her grandpa Bear called her a bug, she shocked everyone by clearly saying”No, papa I’m not a bug, I’m a human.” She was not yet four-years-old so we know there’s a lot going on in her head.

This morning in our maundering way, Bear and I began discussing history and how teaching it is so difficult when we all perceive things differently and learn, value and sometimes discard what we think we know. We forget even ourselves and how our lives grow and change over time. What I think now may be entirely different than what I thought last year, or thirty years ago. The people I thought I would never forget, I did.

So here we are, a small knot on the string of eternity, your knot is as limited as mine is, even when they touch each other. No matter how careful we are we send our children and grandchildren, our friends and neighbors, even ourselves, out into the larger world. Red will go out from her parents to forge a new history and identity all her own, as will her sisters.

One big question Bear and I explored is, what happens when people freely CHOOSE not to learn from history. When they, on their knot of eternity’s thread, look not around them nor acknowledge the unique nature of those sharing the same time-line? Are some so willful that they would rather be dead to anyone else? Are they the ones seeking power? So much history gets lost that a form of spiritual amnesia takes place. None of us can learn everything about another, there is just too much out there.

It seemed, for a few minutes this morning that I could see, I could understand history and eternity in a completely new way, but it all slipped away very rapidly. We face the same human challenges, but each of us is a totally unique person in history. I tell you my story and you may value it as you choose.

Jesus sacrificed His life on earth for our life in eternity. Eternity seems now to me that it is about growth. Always and forever. That idea tastes right to me. And Red’s “knot” will cross ours again, as will all our children and grandchildren’s.

Perhaps in God’s eternal “now” our “knots”, yours and mine, without personal judgment, will stand revealed to each other for our greater good.
Hope to meet you there. • (182 views)

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9 Responses to The Key to History Is Eternity

  1. Kung Fu Zu Kung Fu Zu says:

    It seemed, for a few minutes this morning that I could see, I could understand history and eternity in a completely new way, but it all slipped away very rapidly.

    Such things are by, their very nature, difficult to hold on to. Be happy you could see, if only for a moment, for from what I know of mankind, not many have the experience.

    • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

      I no longer have such peeks into eternity (or knowledge), but when they used to come, they were amazing. And I’m not sure that I trust them, for the world is full of people (not Annie or me, of course) who are drunk on their own sense of omniscience. That’s why I don’t mind a little doubt. Still, it makes you wonder.

      And this is why stillness, reflection, quiet, and prayer are so vital for good writing. Annie says it all slipped away. But it unlikely did not. There are things in our heart, minds, intellect, and souls that are pre-thought and pre-rational. These things are one or two steps away from the verbal, but they ferment and feed the verbal. They will ripen in their own time and be expressed if the person is willing, open, and sensitive to their calling.

      • Anniel says:

        I have been thinking about Dave and his girls so much lately and this business with Red’s heart was shocking to me. Her next stop is a pediatric pulmonologist.

        Dave called laughing the other day though. It seems the docs wanted to put a Holter heart monitor on her for 24 hours and she wanted no part of that. She screamed and kept pulling it off, until Dave told her it was a Robot and it was her job to take care of the Robot. She took her “job” very seriously and fiercely protected her Robot. Her dad understands children well.

  2. Timothy Lane says:

    I was not only slow to lose my primary teeth, but still have one (badly chipped) pre-molar in the lower right side of my mouth. No doubt my bones would drive a forensic anthropologist crazy — the bones of an elderly person, but with one primary tooth still in the mouth.

    A friend of ours had a son who was born with at least one leaky heart valve, needing open-heart surgery within the first year (and further work since). Life can deal us cruel tricks — though it was Sarah Palin’s opinion, when she learned she would have a child with Down’s syndrome, that God doesn’t give you more than you can handle. He didn’t in her case, anyway, and I hope the same is true of you and your family.

  3. Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

    Although our health may grow frail, our constitution may get a little scrambled, no one is truly apart and damaged while they have friends and family who hold and accept them as they are. All my best to Red.

  4. Glenn Fairman says:

    A very thoughtful piece……..God bless her

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