Beauty in the Muck

There have been times in life that I was so busy anticipating potential dangers, that I failed to see the beauty right around me. Last week while working in my garden I was keeping such a keen eye out for snakes (I loathe snakes) that I almost missed the beautiful butterfly in my midst. Sometimes when we are so focused on one negative, it blinds us to the greater number of positives right in front of us.

As the parent of a kid on the spectrum, I have on occasion caught myself anticipating what “could happen” all the while oblivious to what is happening.

Lan will complete his first year of high school in just a few weeks. We are now in the midst of “test anxiety” though trying hard to keep it at a minimum. Failure to pass these exams will mean a summer of trying to restore these credits. “Credit restoration” would play havoc with summer travel plans let alone the struggle of shuttling him back and forth to school.

Lan’s teachers are proud of his work in class. He does better than many of the neuro-typicals in his classes. Yet, Lan has never excelled at standardized testing. Challenging for most, to a kid with attention deficits these exams are a very steep uphill battle.

As an ever recovering control freak, I fight my fears realizing his exams and other things lie well beyond my control. Instead of focusing on the pessimistic what ifs, I am ever searching and sometimes struggling to count my blessings now.

I am grateful this first year of high school has been a success. We had no traumatic events as I’d feared the beginning of the year. Lan’s teachers have been receptive and accommodating. Many students are quite kind to him and often act on his behalf. Lan has made a few friends. He has thrived under the direction of his band teacher. Lan is no longer nervous about the huge crowds and even learned to maneuver them well. As of last week, he no longer meets the requirements for speech therapy services.

In the muck of IEPs, core curriculum and teenage angst, I can appreciate how far we’ve come when I take time to look for the beauty.

I was once so accustomed to looking for potential snakes (bullies, indifferent teachers, additional diagnoses) that I failed to see let alone appreciate the beauty that God poured before me. Now, I am ever grateful and continually search out the beauty in life.

If you feel mired down in your muck, I challenge you to look up from where comes my help. We don’t have to walk this journey alone. We don’t even have to orchestrate every step along the way.

God is willing, available and more than able.

“Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.” Matthew 11:29-30 NKJV

“To console those who mourn in Zion, to give them beauty for ashes, The oil of joy for mourning, The garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; That they may be called trees of righteousness, The planting of the LORD, that He may be glorified.” Isaiah 61:3 NKJV


13 thoughts on “Beauty in the Muck”

  1. Honest and sincere, Lilka. I agree…you are a writer! I’d like to share this on my blog…

    Steve 🙂


      1. You’re a joy to know, Lilka! Even though we’ve never met, I can tell you are a solid, quality person who is open and honest!

        Such qualities are very desirable and those who possess them are true blessings. Have a super day today and blessings on you and your family…

        Steve 🙂


      2. You too, Steve!

        I’ve really been blessed to meet some wonderful people on my blogging adventure. I’ve only had one other person as supportive as you’ve been who was not just my angel but that of others as well who had newly begun blogging. You definitely encourage me as well as others to do our best. That is a rare trait indeed. So, thank you!

        We will see if I can get two posts done today in between other tasks.

        B Blessed and enjoy your day! It is beautiful here in hot ‘lanta but it is really hot! I think spring has sprung and summer is here to stay. 🙂 Lilka


      3. You are like one of your flowers in my mind…beautiful now with the promise of even greater glory when you fully bloom!

        I can’t wait to see what may be inside of you, Lilka. And if I can help encourage you to use that writing talent you have, many people will benefit…

        You are so welcome for anything I can do to help now or in the future…

        Yeah, it is warm in the lower desert area of So. Calif. more than normal winds. Honestly, I’d like to live elsewhere out of Calif.

        Enjoy your day tomorrow and good luck with your writing goal…

        Steve 🙂


      4. Understandable, my dear! As you’ve said, you gotta “pay the bills!” I’m lucky in that I had to retire early and have more time to devote to this work.

        Even so, I do care for my mother who has Alzheimer’s. Also, like everyone, there’s several other day to day things which have to get done.

        Your posts will come along when they come along, and we’ll enjoy them when we can!

        Take it easy today, Lilka, and have a good day at work, (if that’s possible!)

        We’ll be talking again soon.

        Steve 🙂


  2. Lilka,

    Sis, you are a treasure! Your writing moves and inspires me. I can totally relate to the marathon of Autism for it is a journey that requires total faith in God. A faith that enables peace in the storm and hope when all hope seems lost. God has given you the gift of expression through words in which you use extremely well. Keep doing what your doing for mountains will be moved!

    Your brother in Christ,
    Lionel Sneed
    p.s. I will be starting a 3 blog series on the book “Song of Song” regarding Godly relationships.


    1. I look forward to reading your series! I admit my autism journey took a bit to for me to find some peace. The last ten years have been a bit of a roller coaster for my household.

      I am a writer trapped in a pharmacist’s body! Writing has always been my first love but I’ve gotta pay those bills! I am continually trying to submit myself to God for Him to work out His plan in me and not for me to pursue my own agenda.

      If you can guest blog on the autism site maybe I can get posts out on the regular 🙂

      Enjoy your family this weekend and B Blessed! Lilka


  3. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your son as you navigate these next few weeks…again, another beautiful message about looking at the blessings right in front of us. Have a blessed weekend my friend 🙂


  4. It’s a pity you don’t have a donate button! I’d certainly donate to this outstanding blog!
    I suppose for now i’ll settle for bookmarking and adding your RSS feed to my Google account.

    I look forward to brand new updates and will share this blog
    with my Facebook group. Chat soon!


    1. Thank you so much for the kind words and for stopping by! It has definitely been a journey but hopefully I can encourage some folks along their way. Peace! Lilka


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