of peace like a river

I’ve got peace like a river in my soul.
I’ve got peace like a river,
I’ve got peace like a river,
I’ve got peace like a river in my soul.

We sang it at Bible Time a few nights ago, at Alex’s request. Norah doesn’t know it yet, so we began to teach it to her.

There are no routine medical appointments or check-ups allotted to children here, instead they are invited by letter to attend the next “baby clinic” when vaccinations are due. One checks in and waits in queue until the nurse is free to give the shots. Harriet is due for some tomorrow; and, as somehow with the transatlantic transfer of our medical care one of Norah’s vaccinations may have been missed, she is due as well. This will be an Ordeal for Norah: the more so because, while she is slightly accustomed to seeing Harriet have her shots, she will not expect to be given any herself. I felt so guilty about springing it on her. I was seeing her reach adulthood, still terrified to enter a doctor’s office in fear of being seized for unannounced injections. I decided I should tell her this morning.

I have made mistakes as a mother (I know, gasp). This joins the list. The Ordeal of Having the Shot will be nothing to the Ordeal of Knowing About the Shot. Norah was worried about it all the morning, periodically asserting firmly with a few little sobs that she doesn’t want to have a shot.  Telling her it wouldn’t hurt very much did nothing to comfort her. Neither did the promise of a pink lolly immediately afterwards. (Remember me? I’m the mother who tried to potty-train with ice cream.)

It all came to a head in the bathtub. Norah began crying hysterically and claiming that the miniscule (and nearly healed) scrape on her knee was hurting. I kept calm and immediately began to gently discover what was really bothering her. (Okay, first I called Alex in a panic and asked if he thought she had fractured her knee cap. But then I calmed down.) Seriously, I must have taken Stupid Pills this morning. Finally it hit me.

“Norah, are you feeling anxious about having a shot tomorrow?”

That was it. I didn’t know what to do. It might seem small, but this was very, very big to her. How to help her? We prayed together for God to comfort her heart and give her peace. Then I went to go and get something for her. When I came back a minute later, she was grinning at me.

“Mommy! I have peace like a river in me!”

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2 Responses to of peace like a river

  1. Anita says:

    How precious…what a sweet expression of faith!

  2. Ashlea says:

    I too recently informed Eva of vaccinations she will need as she is approaching Kindergarten age. And she completely lost it! She’ll even pretend to give vaccines/shots when playing Dr. She’ll say, “It will only hurt for a minute, but it will keep you healthy.” So, I thought she had an overall appreciative view of vaccines/shots. But shots given to HER… now that’s entirely another matter. Fortunately she won’t be getting hers yet, and I’m not sure yet if I’ll warn her ahead of time or not.

    All that to say… isn’t it precious when they talk about Jesus in a way that reflects a simple trust? love it!!

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