[ Divine Signs ]

Covered With His Love

My husband and I are both 55 years old and we never thought that one day we would be raising a grandchild, but that was exactly what occurred. The events that led up to this were definitely not pleasant and at the time I thought that nothing could be worse than hearing my unmarried daughter tell me that she was pregnant. I was wrong.

From the day Taylor was born, it was love at first sight. He quickly became the center of our lives. He was such a happy little boy and each day he would do or say something that would absolutely thrill us. It was a joy to wake up each day to just be with him and watch him go through all the baby stages.

He was taken to daycare at our church because my husband and I both had to work, but he loved it there and everyone loved him back. Life was good.

It was June of 2008, when Taylor was 4 years old, that we noticed that he was not acting like his normally sunny self. He was very lethargic and had lost his appetite. We also noticed bruises all over his legs. It was around this time that I was called to come and pick him up from daycare because he had a fever. I immediately knew there was something terribly wrong with him. I phoned my husband to tell him was taking Taylor straight to the ER. To make a long story short, we learned that Taylor had leukemia.

We were devastated. It all became very clear to us why he had been acting so strangely. The bruising was a result of his low white blood-cell count and the lack of energy and appetite were other characteristics of this disease. How stupid could we have been to not be alarmed sooner? There it was, as plain as day, yet neither one of us had imagined that it could all add up to something so horrible.

Taylor was immediately put through intense chemotherapy that lasted 14 months. Because of complications that affect only two percent of leukemia victims, the chemo alone would not cure him of this dreadful disease. It was decided that a bone marrow transplant would be the next course of action. We would have to go to the UAB Children's Hospital in Birmingham, Alabama.

During this time, Taylor needed surgery to replace a port that had been inserted in his chest 14 months earlier. Afterward, I watched him as he lay sleeping in the recovery room. His head was turned to one side and his little body looked like he had been in a battle. His left arm had a dark purple bruise from a blown-out vein where his IV had been. He had bandages over two areas on his chest and there were tubes coming out of his body where they had just placed his new port.

Yet despite all of this, he looked peaceful. I took a picture of him with my camera phone to capture that moment.

It was some days later when my husband called me and told me to look closely at the picture I had taken. When I did, I began to cry. What I saw confirmed the reason why Taylor had looked so peaceful.

It was a fairly low-resolution shot, taken in low-lit room with no camera flash. Yet I could see a pale hand on top of Taylor's Head. I knew it was the Hand of God. The sleeve of His garment was draped over Taylor’s scars.

I was moved beyond words. We knew that God had been with us all during the four months Taylor was treated in Birmingham, but this was an unimaginable blessing. We are so thankful that God allowed us to see His tender touch on Taylor's sick little body.

As I write this in early 2010, Taylor is six months post-transplant. Although he still has to wear a mask when he goes out, he is doing well. He continues to bless us each day with his wit and his laughter. Life is good.

During Taylor’s illness we were approached by some of the most fervent prayer warriors any Christian could ask for. Each day we would be brought to tears by the gifts of love that were given to us by our church family, friends, and complete strangers.

God was with us every step of the way. It was the hardest thing we have ever had to go through but our faith and trust in Christ Jesus is what we relied on. Oh how we love Him. Amen and Amen.

Sandra D.

Mobile, AL