Sunday, July 7, 2013

The Dangers of Comparing

Why do we always feel the need to compare ourselves to others?  There have been many times over the past few months where people are going through hard times and they say to me, "but it is not even close to what you had to go through." Now, I will be the first to tell you that losing a child is one of the most tragic and difficult things a person can go through; however, just because I went through that, does that make difficult experiences less painful for others?  I would say absolutely not.

I remember sitting in the Primary Children's surgery waiting room while Joshua went through his last heart catherization procedure.   The cardiologists had just finished explaining to us that they feared Joshua's pulmonary veins were closing and if that was the case, there was nothing else they could do. Tim and I sat in that waiting room and prepared ourselves for the doctors to find the evidence they needed to make that dreaded nightmare a reality. 

Fortunately, that did not happen, but I remember as we sat there for the 2-3 hours, we saw many other parents waiting for news about their that would be something like, "the tubes went in the ears perfectly," or, "the tonsils are out and he is in recovery doing great."  I remember thinking how lucky these parents were that their children did not have such life-threatening reasons for being there.  I remember thinking how they had so little to worry about...that they had no idea how much worse it could be.  Also, I'm sure that someone was looking at us thinking how easy we had it compared to them.

Now, as I look back, I can't help but think about how I would feel if my little Logan had to go in for any type of surgery.  What if he had to have his tonsils out?  What if he had to have tubes put in his ears?  The truth is, it would be hard and I would worry.  It is what we do as parents.

The truth is, the Lord gives us challenges to stretch us  just a little bit beyond our limit.  No matter where our limit is, having to be stretched farther is going to be hard.  It is not our job to compare trials, but it is our responsibility (when we are able) to lift one another's burdens.  Christ suffered through the greatest trial of all and what does he do now?  He serves us and loves us. 

Just because I have been through something terrible, does not mean that I don't feel for others and what they have to go through.  Every time I hear about someone's baby being sick, I feel for them, even though the baby will most likely survive.  Every time I hear about someone who has to kiss their child right before surgery and hand him off to the doctors, I feel for them, even though that child will most likely be ok.  Trials are hard for everyone and it is ok to feel like it is hard, even though someone may be going through something that seems harder.


  1. This post is yet another example of your strength and positive outlook--I never sense any bitterness. You are amazing!

  2. Thanks for this post, Stephanie! You have such an amazing perspective on life. :)


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Joshua Kent Ipson was born December 1, 2012 with a very complicated combination of congenital heart defects. After 2 1/2 months of fighting for his life, he passed away on February 13, 2013. We invite you to share our experiences as we grieve his loss, rejoice in God's plan, & keep Joshua's message of hope alive.
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