When I think of my son this year, the words that spring to mind are "patient endurance".
I love how Ben keeps persevering and trusting in God even when he's sick. I love the way he thinks hard about his attitudes and how they affect how he's feeling. I love how he works at getting well (sleep routines, relaxation exercises, new ways of thinking, headache diaries, exercise...)
I love Ben's loyal friends and his hunger for learning, that mean he keeps up at school, even though we grieve over all he misses out on. I love that he still loves hearing God's word, even though it's often difficult for him to be at church. I love the way he soldiers through the days, and how his teachers come up to me and say, "He tries so hard!".
I love the long conversations we have on the way home from (yet another) doctor's appointment. I love our precious half-hours on the couch, when he fills me in on what he's been thinking about. I love our games and our cuddles and our love for all the same books.
I love his patience and quiet persistence. I love his compassion and helpfulness. I love his love for Jesus.
I love my Ben.
P.S. Ben has recovered from his virus and has been well for several weeks now, except for a couple of one-day migraines. Thank God with us, that well is our new normal.