Monday, September 1, 2008

A Single Hour

And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life? Matthew 6:27

Each day of last week we were blessed to be reading this verse in the midst of the Gospel lesson for Sunday, yesterday. In my head it has morphed two ways. And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to your child's span of life? And which of you by being anxious can subtract a single hour from your child's hospitalization?

We have learned a lot this hospitalization. Each time that John has been sick has been a learning experience, not only about illness, and such but even more so a growing in faith and a growing together as a family.

This illness has brought us many lessons on viruses and what can be done to prevent them and how prevalent they are. It has also brought us lessons on true friendship, not just Mark's and mine that continues to grow but also how much it means to us to have Charity and Angie and other's through on-line relationships and in person too who reach out to us, not just to make sure that we are okay but to share their lives with us. It has brought us lessons on patience, and judging by how little patience we had before John was born and how much more we could certainly use, there are many more lessons to learn in this area. It has afforded us the time to talk deeply about life and how precious it is and how fleeting it is at the same time. In all of this and through all of this it has given us moments of deep heart wrenching sorrow and boundless soaring joy.

Despite not always feeling great, having to be poked periodically for blood draws and IV's, not getting enough rest just due to hospital schedules we have watched John grow and learn and change during this time in the hospital. If you are a Velveteen Rabbit fan, you will understand when I say that during this stay John's tigers have joined monkey in becoming real. I have been amazed to watch them develop both personality and relationships. The tigers are the first to jump up and dance whenever music is heard, and quickly they find monkey to hold them and dance with them. Monkey is always there for a cuddle and chat and while he might be the first to go overboard when all animals are jumping ship, he is the last to remain upright sitting and watching John play and having a book read to him. Monkey is a great Curious George fan and always has to watch at least a partial episode, yet it is the tigers who must be awake for Tom and Jerry and who often sign or sword fight along with the characters. Sometimes monkey and sometimes tiger, but always someone, has to go potty, and often stinks or needs a wipe or tries to reprogram John's pumps while they are parked in the bathroom within reach. Both tigers and monkeys need shirts, pants, diapers and much to the detriment of their fur diaper cream, stickers, tape and bandaids. Monkey spent one evening wearing a tourniquet and getting periodic IV's and then hugging John afterwards. I have watched these animals sign to each other, sign to nursing staff and to me and Mark, the tigers are even learning to talk using John's AET, some combination of monkey and tigers always says prayers at every meal and at night, get their teeth brushed, help John brush his teeth, take medication and help to dispense it too. Even one time early on when John was still having many accidents without being able to make it to the potty, it was monkey who stunk and made that mess, not John.

We seem to be nearing the end of another hospitalization, for anyone who is keeping track you know that we have spent most of June, July and now August either in the hospital, traveling to doctors or what have you and will understand that we are all looking forward to some time at home. We do go to Omaha next Tuesday, and while that isn't really much fun we are looking forward to the time we will get to spend with Charity and her family on Monday. We had thought/hoped that John would come home on Saturday, we were looking forward to attending church together, but God's timing is His own and the time that it takes for little boys to heal is His also.

I found it interesting that John had a completely different, more reverential attitude last night when Mark was conducting basically a shut-in worship service for us than he does during regular night time prayers. John is fascinated with the Lord's Supper and each time we try to explain a little more, sure is hard to do when he can't really ask us questions and we are trying to anticipate what he would want to know. His eyes got really big last night when daddy was closing the box that his communion set is in, it instantly made me wonder if he thought that Mark was shutting Jesus up in that box, as John has been told many times that the Lord's Supper is Jesus. I guess we just keep talking to him and answering things as we can figure out/anticipate that he needs/wants to know them.

John looked fantastic when I left last night, he was running at 85ml/hr tolerating both his g-tube feeds and his baking soda dosages and Mark tells me that he is looking just as great this morning at 90ml/hr. He has to get to 95ml/hr to go home and from the looks of it he should be able to do that some time this afternoon. He lost his IV last night when I was leaving and they've not had to put another one in, so he is getting to take a bath this morning in the big bathtub in the shower room, after dad wipes it out with anti-microbial wipes that is. We will be stopping on the way home for copious amounts of bleach, hand sanitizer and lysol or I might go in early and pick those things up first. I feel some germaphobia creeping in, or is that just bugs.

And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life? Matthew 6:27 And which of you by using bleach, hand sanitizer, good handwashing techniques and lysol can keep your child from getting sick one time? I'm not sure, but it's worth a try. Semi-paranoid mommy.


AmusedMomma said...

Gina, it is amazing to me that your faith which is shared so freely throughout your posts is such an inspiration. Your honesty in the areas of doubt and pain I think is what makes it ring so true.

We continue to pray for John's health!

Gina said...

Thank you for praying for John's health. He's home this morning, oh it feels good. There is certainly enough pain and doubt here, lately I've been reading a lot of Mark's books trying to fortify the fluff in my head with some good theology, funny how that helps.