Tuesday, September 23, 2014
Home from being with Honey. He's worn out. Dialysis in the morning and all sorts of tests later to try to determine the source of all the TIAs. The right side of his face has a slight droop and his right arm and hand are swollen from dependent edema. He is excited to know that his oldest grandson is now engaged as of Saturday and got to see pics of the pretty girl. He loves visitors but can't keep his eyes open very long. He was very alert when answering questions about the family and literally laughed when I told him that I was planning on taking trips to Locust, his boyhood home, to collect creek rock. I told him that I was going to have it glued to the bricks on his house so that he would have a house of rocks. He also grinned when I was telling his oldest daughter about some of our adventures to different churches and what the Lord had done. The TEE and other tests showed clotting in an artery, severe ulcerations in the intestine, and many other anomalies. During dialysis about a liter of fluid was removed from his body. I think of the song line "bruised and battered, weary and worn, we shall be like Him on that resurrection morn" . This ship is a wreck, but God is still the Master of the sea. I see through 2 sets of eyes. I see through the eyes of someone who wants to see a miracle, but also through the experienced eyes of an old nurse who's seen too much over the years to shrug off the damage these events have caused in a fragile body. The Word says that God is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think according to the power that worketh in us. We are instructed to give thinks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. I want to rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation and continue instant in prayer. This battle is not over. I have seen Honey bless the people around him even while he suffers. His extreme modesty has been challenged, having to submit his total care to strangers. The humanity of Christ was also stripped of all modesty and hung on display before strange eyes. I know my redeemer understands the humiliation and frustration of not being heard, understood and cherished. His dignity is lost in the fold of white sheets and his freedom is denied by the multitude of tubes and lines connected to and in his body. But the joy of the Lord is upon him. He holds my hand and squeezes, he chews water out of a dampened rag in an attempt to wet his parched lips, and he whispers "I love you too". He is down, but not defeated. He's in a battle for his life and what the world may call a loss, God counts as triumph. Get your eyes off of the temporary...look toward eternity. Keep praying, not just for Honey, but for the church, for the children, for the lost, for each other. If My people which are called by My Name shall humble themselves and pray, then will I hear from heaven, forgive their sin, and heal their land.We need revival...a healing resurrection of a fervency toward God. Miracles can happen, God is always a good God and mighty Savior.
Sunday, September 21, 2014
There are times when all you can hang on to is the promise that tears may endure for the night, but joy comes in the morning. I wasn't allowed to stay with Honey too long tonight, but while I was sitting by his bed, listening to all the beeps and whistles and the rumble of footsteps, low voices, and carts being pushed here and there...he turned his head and smiled at me. I was patting his hand and he lifted those horribly swollen fingers and rested them on top of my hand and squeezed. I told him about my day and when I told him that I would be lost if I booked engagements and he weren't there to tell me that he loved me, was proud of me, and that he thought I did a fine job presenting the Lord's Word, he really smiled. One of the church ministers stopped by and came in while I was sitting there and I asked Honey if he knew who was visiting him. He looked at the brother and declared "nope, I don't know him. I've never seen him in my life". Then asked the visitor how he was doing. How I long to see the church adopt this attitude at large. We as a people have the means and ability to stop looking at what we want for ourselves and to start looking at what others need. This is witness. This is salvation ...to live in such a way that Christ is seen and celebrated in every situation. I'm sure that God sees my tears and knows my name...but He also knows each of His children by name. We are not alone; we have a friend who understands. When I can't sit by Honey, when I can't kiss his face or speak words of encouragement into his ear, when I can't hold his hand, I have a God who keeps on staying right with him. He's never alone. This season will pass and until the Lord returns the sun will continue to come up in the morning and set in the evening. I hold to God's unchanging hand.
Saturday, September 20, 2014
I got to spend several hours in ICU with Honey today. No one else could come and all the procedures had been completed by the 8:30 am visiting time. Nurse Angie allowed me to go in and since he seemed to be resting allowed me to pull up a chair by the bed and just stay for awhile. I gave him a mani and pedicure, got some lotion on his dry skin and was able to do oral care a few times. After nearly 3 weeks of immobility he can barely lift his hand. The blockage is moving, the bleeding is controlled for now, he still has wet lung sounds that need to be suctioned occasionally and he will be on dialysis until whenever. The MRI has confirmed that he has had several small strokes but is still able to recognize me. It tore my heart out when I first went in, went to his side and told him "I'm here, I love you." and he looked up through that gaunt face and asked "why do you love me" . I told him that he was my "gift from God and that this was almost over...just keep fighting, tomorrow would be a better day." Holding his hand and remembering the dumbest things passes the time. I've always thrown big plans at him that he laughed at. I was going to paint his back bedroom wall with a mural of Locust, his boyhood home and put creek rock back there so he could sit and pretend he was back on the farm. The first year we dated I planted tomatoes by his front porch just to see if he'd leave them there. He says that before I came along he could mow his yard blindfolded, now it's a maze of plants and takes forever to get done. I kept threatening to plant more. He had a bush die in the back yard and woke up one morning to me running a chain saw cutting down the old bush and digging a hole to plant a new one.He said "never in his entire life would he have every believed that he would be in love with a woman who could saw wood but not cook". I made him stop by a railroad track so that I could dig up honeysuckle and plant in his back yard. He got to where he would look for flowers when we went driving just to please me. He used to bring me flowers at Scott Memorial Hospital 'just because'. I finally told him I wanted something that would live...and that began the rose garden, then the hibiscus bushes. Other garden plants came and lovely gifts that are so treasured. Notes left on my steering wheel, cards, phone calls that I recorded. Time brings so many things to mind. He's been so good to me and I appreciate him with all my heart. Going into the unit is also a reminder that time continues to pass. The doctors look like children, the nurses like little girls. But in all my medical career I've never come across more professional, on task care. I do not like the systems that give 1 nurse 5 to 9 patients and a nurse assistant half of a unit to care for. Magnet systems are nothing more than money making profit seeking pockets that make patients suffer with minimal care in minimal situations. Reminds me of the movie 'Bucket List' where until Jack N's character has no mercy until he's the recipient of his own system. At least in ICU that has not happened.This will be a long recovery. But God has all the time in the world. Healing will come right on time from our on time God. I praise His Holy Name.
Friday, September 19, 2014
Home for a little while, but will go back this evening. Can't get in to be with Honey but for a few minutes at a time. He was exhausted, lying on his left side but very alert for a few minutes. He had just come back from another MRI to determine if there were any changes from the stroke. I see no deficits right now, but the neurologist said that he saw some. I did not go into any discussion when I asked questions, but the doctor is very young, came in talking fast and low, and started asking questions right away. When Honey didn't answer him quickly he gave a knowing nod to his nurse who was taking notes. I interrupted and told him that Honey could not hear him and told him to speak a little slower, louder and to look directly at him when he asked anything. Honey was then able to answer everything from the year to the president and a lot of personal info like name, birthdate, address, church, year we started dating, etc...but even after telling the Dr who our current president is, Honey was not able to tell him that Bush was in before Obama....Off the bat, I wouldn't remember that either. Then he asked him to lift his right leg. Surgery on the 3rd, no physical therapy, unable to lift it before the surgery and he marked it as a stroke deficit. Hmmmmm. I don't think that's really a test for strength in Honey's situation. BUT..everytime they mark down a deficit...it just means that he will get more focused care...so mark on and pay attention to this man. Loved it when he was asked to stick out his tongue...dry mouth, no saliva, dehydration, parched lips...oh, yeah..we should be able to do this. I think the longer this situation lasts the testier I'm becoming. Thank God for the nurse who saw that he was critical and for calling a code that got him into ICU and God bless Karen his current ICU nurse who could care less about the family's feelings and focuses on excellent care for her patient FIRST. She is a top notched, excellent nurse and I'm so glad she's been taking care of him. We now have the atelectasis, the blockage, a healing (stapled) stomach bleed, renal failure, recovery from lumbar surgery, physical therapy to walk again, and a stroke. All he needs now is a hang-nail.
The cards are still coming. I'm planning to have a card read as soon as he's able to stay awake for more than a couple of minutes at a time. He's had visitors, and in the waiting room we have appreciated the company and support during difficult stretches. I know that he is disoriented and it seems overwhelming for anyone to hear me give him an update each time I go in, but when you're lying in a bed and being moved location to location while you're not fully conscious, it's hard to stay oriented. Without glasses you can't always see the calendar or just who is speaking to you and days start running together. I know that I can't do anything when I go..but I feel like I need to be there. One of his daughters talked about being torn between being with her husband and staying with Honey. She said her mother had always told her that her husband came first. I'm not married to Honey but I love him for who he is and what he has meant to me during the last decade. I can't imagine how much worse I could feel if we had married. There are several stages to grief and even though I believe that God has a purpose for what he's going through right now, and that he will survive and testify about the mercies of our Lord, I still need to travel through each of these stages in order to stay focused on helping Honey to recover. So- if I sound bitter or angry, take it for what it is. I'm so very human and it's still Friday night...but Sunday's a'comin' and the Son's gonna shine again. Thanks to all for continuing to pray and encourage.
God is good...ALL the time and worthy to be praised.
Thursday, September 18, 2014
Honey has survived the last 2 days .It has not been an easy road to walk. With all of the problems yesterday of ports and IV sites not working, today was high stress to the max. To make a long story short, he was bleeding out from an abdominal ulcer and had to have surgery today to fix it. a new shiley was placed, a groin IV and several other access sites and by tonight, his stomach had been pumped out and he was on dialysis again. He's had a stroke as well and this now adds up to just one more obstacle for him to face before rehab can begin. I believe with all my heart that prayer has kept him going. Younger daughter is still difficult to deal with , but it is what it is. Camping daughter showed up this morning and it seemed to ease the tension. Every time I spoke his name, Honey would open his eyes and say "I love you" . Worth all the waiting. So, back tomorrow and will wait some more. Sorry for the short entries, but I'm just too tired to write. Keep Sparkin'!
Get An Email Alert Each Time TATTER3 Posts