It was a story followed by many. A family of six — two parents, four boys. The first three born healthy, wrestling and chasing and cuffing each other in that way that boys have (the way that spells love). And then came one more.
Born last, though not least in his family line, he arrived, bringing joy. And with him came every hope and dream for a shiny-bright future that is ever birthed, all unbidden, when a child’s delivered.
HIS MOTHER she cradled his blanketed form, pressing kisses to brow, head and hands. She breathed in his scent, that faint wisp of Heaven’s breeze that rests, mantle like, on babes just come down. Surely, then, with that small scrap of eternity nestled sweet to her chest, she gave thanks. For this is what mothers do whose hearts have swelled, have enlarged, making room for one more.
His father and brothers, they, too, gave their thanks and welcomed him in. For this is what families do who love life and each other; they make room for one more.
It is often, one finds, on the most normal of days that life takes a turn. With a twist of the wheel, the ring of the phone, the world as we know it is altered forever. For the family in this story, it was two words spoken over the child that changed their course.
What a cursed disease is cystic fibrosis. It attacks the lungs and keeps a boy from doing what he loves the most—to run like the wind and keep up with his friends. A boy’s about action, about motion and speed. A boy wants to conquer, to climb trees and jump. To beat a drum, blow a horn, throw a ball, sled a hill. All this and more a fellow will do. If, of course, he is healthy.