Sunday, December 3, 2023

Be Gentle, Pushing Too Hard Is Rough

So we're home. (How did I not put that up?) He came home two weeks ago today. 

Then we had Thanksgiving week. And the day after where we put up Christmas. 

So essentially I had six weeks of illness and/or hospital stays. The first one was 13 days and we were on the floor the whole time. The second was only 25 hours later, admit by ambulance, land in the PICU where the doctor recommends I don't leave the hospital for a few days as we watch how things play out. Yeah, he was that sick. 

After about five days, we thought we were on the right track and started talking about being on the floor for another week-plus, or going home with a PICC line. We opted for the floor initially to make sure he was stable. Good choice by the way. We went to the floor on Sunday . . . and back to the PICU on Wednesday where things got rough again. It took 11 more days before he was stable enough to come home.

During this time, I also kept working (except those two really hard days). And we had state football playoffs. And while on the floor, I slept on a somewhat uncomfortable couch, but in the PICU it was a "reclining chair bed." Those quotation marks are important. It was a stretch to call it a bed, yet that's where I slept, because I already felt bad about being away during the day. Needless to say, there wasn't any great, restorative sleep during that whole time. 

We came home and it was Thanksgiving time/Christmas decorating time, and while I didn't do as much as most years, it was still important to me to do it. And I think important to the family. Too many things have been put on hold over time. 

So then what happened?

Yeah, my body and mind decided to assert itself and say ENOUGH!!

I hardly was able to get out of bed last Saturday, and Sunday was also rough. Migraines, stomach issues, just all over body aches and serious brain fog. But Sunday I got to go to church. I think I've only been in my home meetings a handful of times since mid-August. A very small handful. 

I sat there and the opening hymn was "I Know That My Redeemer Lives."  Part of the second verse sings:

He lives to comfort me when faint.
He lives to hear my soul's complaint. 
He lives to silence all my fears. 
He lives to wipe away my tears. 
He lives to calm my troubled heart. 
He lives all blessings to impart.  

I tried to keep singing, but after "silence all my fears," I couldn't. I sat there, alone (because William was home with Aaron and Michael was at the sacrament table), and cried. And a sweet, dear friend, who was on the stand because she was speaking that day, stood up, came down, and held me. She just held me while I cried. 

I was hurting, and I was rejoicing. He does live! And because He lives, we all will again too. But between now and then, we will go through some awful, really hard times, which will include saying goodby to Aaron. And that hurts. And I had been pushing so hard, for so long, and my body and emotions were just done. 

But she held me. And she stayed by my side until the sacrament was over and Michael came. And then she sat with me again during our second hour meeting and put two bracelets that she'd made on my wrist.

In the Bible, we read that in Gethsemane, an angel came to strengthen Christ. Today someone mentioned that they weren't quite sure what kind of strengthening that might have been. For the atonement to be effective, Christ had to hold all our sins and all our pains, all of everything. But it occurred to me that perhaps in just being there, being present, the angel strengthened Him and made it possible for Him to continue. She was my angel, sent to me when I needed her. 

Friends, this is hard! Aaron continues to have his ups and downs. He fevers and then doesn't. His digestive system works and then goes on strike. He smiles and laughs, and then will sleep almost around the clock. He's 13, thirteen!! There aren't very many boys with full T18 older than him. But he's not the only one, and I'm not the only one affected. He is a younger brother, a son, a brother-in-law and an uncle, a grandson, nephew, cousin and so on. He's a friend. He's my inspiration. He has a mission here on earth and I know he will be here until it's done. 

And it will hurt. And we will have those who minister to us, who hold us up and just hold us. I'm so grateful for the support and help. 

In the meantime, I'm slowing down. I'm trying to listen to my body and decide that while some things are important, others are not so important. I'm trying to just "be." If you're pushing too much, too hard, if things need to be "done" or "perfect" or whatever, take a minute. Decide if it really is that important. Maybe it is, but maybe it isn't. 

Be gentle with yourself. 

“Gentleness is very rarely taught, especially in regards to being gentle with ourselves.” 
~ Camille Grady

No comments:

Post a Comment