Dear Parent of a Sick Child (letter #2)

Dear Parent of a Sick Child,

You are still there, aren’t you?  You are still at the hospital awaiting for results, for your child to wake up, and for any glimpse of good news…anything that will settle your heart to the hope of a new day without sickness.  You are tired, but you do not want to show it.  You put on a strong face, but you wonder sometimes if you can keep this costume of strength on.

You have found yourself to be a superhero of sorts,  During those quiet moments, you feel like Clark Kent.  You feel vulnerable, weak, and absolutely human.  Yet, during those strong moments where your sick child is watching, you adorn yourself with that cape of strength that you have uncomfortably worn for a while now.  You become Superman or Superwoman.  You stay up all night watching the monitors next to your child.  You make a list of questions for treatment options, expectations, and possibilities.  That brave mask you wear that shows no sign of weakness or vulnerability is rarely taken off, especially around your sick child.

Yet, you sneak off to the isolated corners of the hospital where no one can see you.  You weep with the agony of a desperate heart.  You cry out, “Please, please. Heal my child.”  You bargain with God.  You tell Him that you would gladly trade positions with your child.  You would shorten your life in order to lengthen the life of your baby.  You, dear parent of a sick child, are a weary soldier.

Dear Parent of a Sick Child, be still now.  It is okay for you to weep in the quiet corners of the hospital, and to bargain about extending your child’s life.  It is okay for you to yearn to swap places with your sick child.  You are only human, you know.  But….

You are a warrior.  You hold your child with an incomparable measure of strength as he or she gets one more treatment, one more I.V. that cannot seem to find a vein, and one more painful test. You stay up all night in order to catch your child opening his or her eyes for the first time in several weeks.

Your shield has become one of hope.  It may get dings in it, but you never stop carrying it.  It has become your defensive weapon against those who bring you bad news.  Although dampened at times, it still reflects a light that others catch when around you.

You, parent of a sick child, are one of the toughest kind of parents.  You are a survivor of a war waged on the one person you would give your life for.  You did not ask for this.  You did not expect this.  You were barely able to stand when you received the news that broke your heart, but, you stood for your child.

Yes, you are a Superhero of sorts.  You are a warrior.  You wear the mask of bravery, the cape of strength, and the shield of hope.  

Dear Parent of a Sick Child, do you want to know something?

Your child knows you are there.  Your child sees your brave face.  Your child does not know that you disappear to the isolated corners of the hospital.  Your child does not realize that your knees buckled at the devastating news.  Your child also does not know that you bargain with God on his or her behalf.

Do you want to know why?

Because while you are busy being a non-glorified superhero, you step aside so that your child becomes the warrior, the fighter, and the one who receives the praise for being strong.  

Dear Parent of a Sick Child, your kind of strength only comes around every so often.  Most parents will (thankfully) never know the depths of exhaustion mixed with a sliver of hope that you have gone through.

Sneak off to the quiet corners of the hospital if you need to.  Pray, and plead with God about the life of your child.  Advocate for treatment options, keep your mask of bravery, cape of strength, and shield of hope on.  

For your child…

the one you pray over,

the one you bargain for,

the one your knees buckled in despair over,

the one you put on a mask of bravery for,

the one you wear your cape of strength around,

and the one you carry your shield of hope for,

will also wear a mask of bravery, a cape of strength, and a shield of hope.

Dear Parent of a Sick Child, you are a warrior.

Related Posts:  Dear Parent of Sick Child

19 thoughts on “Dear Parent of a Sick Child (letter #2)

  1. Pingback: Dear Parent of a Sick Child | barrentoblessed

  2. Steph

    i love this as I have just finished my bottle of naproxen because my hip impingement can’t take the hard vinyl chair….. I am in emotional & physical pain…. my mind can’t rest because it fills up with new questions,once the old ones have been answered new ones creep in & circle my head! thankfully putting into words what my heart feels daily. somewhere in a children’s hospital…….


  3. Betty M Wright

    The person writing this must have gone through it to know so much about it. I did not go through it with a child (I can not imagine that kind of agony) but I did go through it with my husband. I cried buckets of tears in bathrooms, on balconies of the hospital, in my bed at night and prayed until I had no more words.


    1. barrentoblessed

      Hi Betty,
      I am not (thankfully) the parent of a seriously ill child. I write more from my experience as a child who battled a near-fatal and sudden illness. I write from the perspective of what it would be like to sit day after day in the hospital. I also think of my parents who were ever-present throughout my life-changing illness and subsequent surgery. Thank you so much for reading, and taking the time to comment. I wish you blessings in this new year.


  4. Pingback: REPOST : Dear Parent of a Sick Child (letter #2) | An Epistle of A Moribund Specie

  5. Kate

    I was once a child in this situation and though the years have passed I have never forgotten the strength of my parents. Your words are so beautifully illustrating what the children see what an outsider would see. Thank you for sharing such amazing words.


  6. MamaBear

    I am just winding down from another stressful day in the Children’s Hospital in Vancouver, British Columbia. My daughter has Leukemia and started the day with chest pain .. I know well the quiet corners in which to cry .. thanks for writing this letter.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Melissa Longoria

    Thanks so much for the author of this story…iam currently stuck in a hospital with my 5 month old baby girl who was diagnosed with a malignant tumor. Fortunately dr got it out but they are scared it might have spread. I feel like iam going crazy. Haven’t slept and an constantly talking with her letting her know it will all her ok and we’ll be looking back on this very soon. 😢


    1. barrentoblessed

      Hi Melissa, Thank you for your comment. Glad the doctor was able to remove the tumor, and’ I’ll pray for that the cancer has not spread. Thanks so much for reaching out. God bless you and your sweet baby girl.


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