[headline_arial_small_centered color=”#000000″]There Is No Bad Day[/headline_arial_small_centered]
[headline_tahoma_small_left color=”#000000″]Jumping The Gun[/headline_tahoma_small_left]
The ‘felt so good to be home’ part swiftly faded unfortunately. I went straight to my bed to lie down when I got home. Nan fed me some chicken, rice and veggies in bed. And not an hour later my stomach locked up on me again with cramps. “Oh no! Not again!” I attempted narcotics to relieve the pain, but nothing worked. It got worse and worse as the evening progressed. Writhing in pain and thrashing around all over the bed moaning. Nan called the doctor in panic. “It should go away.” He said. “See if you can make it through the night, this should pass. Call me if it gets worse.”
It got worse. Extreme nausea started its night-shift of torture. 5 hours of agony later at 1:30 AM after barely sleeping at all, a painful and gut wrenching puke fest ensued; somewhat relieving, but totally exhausting. Now totally dehydrated, I staggered into our tiny master bathroom. I recall leaning over the toilet to grab a plastic bucket. Then the next thing I remember is coming to consciousness on my back to Nan screaming at the top of her lungs for help.
She had watched mortified from our bed as my skeletal frame collapsed in a thud against the wall, eyes wide open, mouth gaping, and completely unconscious. The image apparently gave her nightmares for weeks afterwards. Frantically she pulled me to the floor as she screamed for her Mom in our guest bedroom. They called 911 and literally less than 60 seconds later EMT’s were in my bedroom, they just happened to be right around the corner.
I was loaded on a stretcher and hauled off to the ER again. This time, my three older children, all awake in our front room, looked on in shock and fear as they wheeled me into the frigid night. My heart ached to see the fear in their eyes, and nothing I could do. I longed to hold them, to cry with them, to comfort them. But they were gone. And I was on my way back to the emergency room for the fourth time in a five week period. That morning Nan wrote on facebook:
November 9, 2012
Well, I guess we jumped the gun. After 12 hours of excruciating bowel pain and finally puking up everything he ate yesterday and scaring the living daylights out of me by passing out in the bathroom, here we are back at Boulder Community Hospital for a few more days.[/content_box_light_green]
Now back in the hospital but in a much worse hospital wing. I snuck food into my room by calling a delivery guy for a Turkey Sub. My new nurse yelled at me for breaking my liquid diet restriction. This place sucks! I couldn’t handle the grape flavored sugar, and I was just following what I thought were Doctor’s orders to “Eat everything you want”. Still in pain, still bloated, and unable to eat anything without pain and heavy doses of drugs, I despaired at the thought of staying another day in the hospital. But I feared going home and creating more nightmares for my family. Super discouraged, every day extracted massive willpower from my diminishing reserves just to get through the moments and stave off the negative thoughts.
[headline_tahoma_small_left color=”#000000″]Amazing Experiences With Love And Grace[/headline_tahoma_small_left]
Depression blurred the days and negativity bombarded me. I didn’t want to see anyone. But I knew I needed help to get out of my head. One morning some loving friends came and I nearly chewed them out for just smiling when I felt so angry at my lot in life. Thankfully they patiently stayed over an hour. The light of their presence pulled me out of the darkness. Another day I wrote this on facebook:
November 12, 2012
As a quick update…I went home from the hospital less than a day last week and I’m back in, working on my degree in ultimate patience as I continue to somehow survive the hospital liquid diet and slowly allow my stomach and bowels to start cooperating again.
Last night I had an amazing love-filled spiritual experience with my Dad which I am so grateful for…and it continues to prove to me that there can always be good and even amazing found in each day. So, even if I am bombarded today with challenge, pain, boredom, negative thoughts or whatever, I’m going to do my best to keep looking for something amazing about today. I assure you it is no easy task some days. But what better course of action is there?
P.S. – count your blessings. If your body is functioning normally be grateful, it is such a gift to have a healthy body.[/content_box_light_blue]
Really, what better course is there than to seek the good in it all?
Amidst moments of dark despair, my Father and I grew closer that night than I had ever felt before. We held each other, cried together, and prayed together. My heart filled with peace as I knew somehow the pain would pass, though I still didn’t see the way. I felt total comfort in the arms of my Father, relying completely upon his love and compassion. I felt through him the tender love of my Heavenly Father. I sobbed in gratitude to God for giving me this new ray of hope in my darkness. My pain and problems were consumed and meaningless in the presence of the light, peace, and joy I felt in my hospital room for an hour that Sunday night.
Other nights Nan crawled into my hospital bed, holding me, crying with me, listening to my fears and concerns, assuring me we would make it through. I ached each time she left me there. She was always so patient, so loving, and so tender. Despite crawling through hell herself, confronted with fears and nightmares of my death and becoming a widow. Despite my irritability. Despite her son losing control of his mind and emotions. Despite feeling lost, out of control, and barely hanging on to hope herself. Overwhelmed and constantly on the verge of cracking from the weight of it all, yet still patient with me. And she had her own tender moments of peace as she fed Kelsie and looked into the eyes of her newborn daughter who was oblivious of the storm raging all around her. Just at peace. A small piece of heaven and a saving grace for Nan helping pull her through. Reminding her of God’s love. Bringing eternal perspective, which brought just enough peace to see her through a few more hours.
[headline_tahoma_small_left color=”#000000″]Finally Home To Stay[/headline_tahoma_small_left]
After another full week of severely depressing lows and amazing spiritual highs in the hospital, November 14th I finally came home for good. And I actually had enough energy to sit at the table and play cards with my son and my Dad! Still in the mid 130’s though, and looking pretty skeletal. Abe was happy that day. He said he had forgiven me, but he was far from recovered from the trauma that had decimated his emotions. I wrote this on facebook the next week:
November 19, 2012
I finally got to come home from the hospital last Wednesday. It is SO good to be home. My strength is coming back and my digestive system is a little better each day. It’s so relieving to finally be seeing some progress.
This afternoon I went out with Nan and ate a Larkburger and strawberry shake that I was craving. Then we went to REI to get me some clothes. I almost felt like a normal human being again…which was pretty cool.
Last night I was able to tuck my kids in to bed for the first time in months. It was such a sweet experience, and it felt so good to finally be able to help and take some of the load off of Nan. She deserves some kind of award for what she has been through with a newborn, 3 extremely needy and scared kids, and an incapacitated husband the last few months. I am so blessed to be married to such a strong woman…her ability to endure hardship is mind boggling.
I am thankful to all of you that have been praying, and sending positive energy our way. And especially thankful for the many people that have been supporting Nan and coming with food and help with the kids and the house. We have received so much kindness and help. I’ve still got a lot of recovery and I’m 40 pounds underweight. I’m still on IV nutrition to supplement at night. But I’m home and things are getting better each day and I’m grateful to God beyond description to be back with my family instead of stuck in a hospital bed alone all day.[/content_box_light_blue]