“Trusting the Rest to the Lord,” Ensign, July 2001, 60–61
“Mom!” The high-pitched wail made me wince. What now? I wondered. The children had recently gone to bed, and I was going about my evening activities. My husband was gone to a late meeting.
I went upstairs, bracing myself for what I thought was probably another argument between siblings, and found my youngest child, Michaella, standing in her nightgown and looking at me with red-rimmed eyes. “My ear hurts, Mom.”
Oh, no, I thought. Why does this always happen at night? “You’ll just have to wait until morning, honey,” I told her. I couldn’t justify the expense of an emergency-room visit for an ear infection. I used all the home remedies I knew and tucked her in. “Try to sleep now,” I said. “I’ll call the doctor as soon as her office opens in the morning.”
Downstairs again, I tried to clean up and read, but I felt anxious and could not concentrate. I went to the kitchen and halfheartedly began to wipe the counters. Then with a sudden motion I threw down the cloth. I headed back upstairs to check on Michaella, moving softly in case she was asleep. I stopped halfway up. Through the open door at the top of the stairs, I could hear whimpering sobs.
I could not take it. I couldn’t just stand by, helpless, while my child suffered. I sank down on the stairs, tears running down my face. I prayed. I pleaded. My hands trembled as I told the Lord that I would do everything I could to help my daughter but that I would leave the rest up to Him. After taking a few deep breaths, I climbed the rest of the stairs, approached my daughter’s bedside, and smoothed the damp hair away from her forehead.
“It hurts bad, Mom.” The usual dimple in her cheek wasn’t there. Her face was waxy. Fatigue and pain had made dark blue smudges under her eyes.
I decided I wouldn’t wait until my husband returned from his meeting; I would risk looking like an overanxious, overprotective, and overreacting mother. “I’m going to call our home teacher, OK?”
I made the phone call, feeling somewhat awkward. When I asked our home teacher if he could come over to give Michaella a blessing, the answer was, “Of course.” A short while later he arrived, smiling, as if driving out late at night was his favorite thing to do.
While he performed the blessing I felt hope lighten my heavy heart. I thanked him as he left, then put Michaella to bed again. She was asleep within minutes.
The next morning she seemed so much better, I was tempted to skip calling the pediatrician. But I had promised the Lord I would do everything I could. So I called the doctor.
Later that morning, as I sat on the hard wooden office chair, I watched the doctor closely. She peered through her otoscope into Michaella’s ear and pursed her lips, blowing a silent whistle of dismay. “You didn’t get much sleep last night, did you?” It was more of a statement than a question.
“Oh yes,” I said brightly. “She slept straight through the night.”
I took a mental photograph of the doctor’s astonished face.
I knew then that we had had our own private little miracle. Nothing spectacular had happened. No seas were parted, no lepers cleansed, no dead raised. It had simply been a night of peace, without pain, for a little girl.
For me, it was enough.