Why Chris is Rad... and other blessings

Caring Bridge Journal Entry  — Mar 1, 2018

Chris is managing my recovery like the CTO that he is.

He put all my meds into an app on my phone that alerts me when to take meds and which meds to take. If I don't take them on time, it sends HIM an alert. So I'm a good girl and take my meds on time. :)

He manages the flow of information that comes at me so that I'm not overwhelmed. If I don't need to know it, then I don't. With a brain on drugs, this is immensely helpful.

He and Nurse Mom have daily pow-wows about my activity level and pain level. So, I walk downstairs at least once a day and we are working towards a walk to the end of the driveway by Friday. It's good to have goals.

When I was running out of pain meds on the weekend, Chris called every number he could think of and didn't accept a No until he got me a refill. He's like a momma-bear on steroids fighting for me

.And that's why Chris is rad.

He's such a blessing to me. In a season of hard, every blessing stands out. Every blessing reminds me of God's goodness. But the blessings are easy to miss. I have to intentionally look for them.

Yesterday, was not a good day. I didn't sleep well and woke up sore and achy. I needed a nap by 10:00am. The doctor warned us there would be days like this and not to lose sight of the overall progress in my recovery. But it was so discouraging to wake up feeling yucky after 2 or 3 good days in a row. It's hard to stay positive on a bad day. So, I challenged myself to count my blessings. Stop focusing on the temporary setback and focus on all the many little good things that God is showering on me. Here's a start:

1. A husband who can do his job AND mine with grace and kindness.

2. An employer (Chris') who is beyond understanding and not pushing Chris back to full-time work before we are ready.

3. Mom, who just happened to be in California and was able to be at the hospital within 3 hours of Chris' call for help. (There are no coincidences in life.) She's a nurse and spent each night with me in the hospital and even now is sharing my bed at night. I don't need to worry about taking meds during the night or scary symptoms that creep up while I sleep. She's there. She's a calming presence full of facts when my fears try to creep up on me with imaginary complications.

4. BFF's who took Chris' call for help and within hours had a plan for how to keep my family and home running without me. (Who does that?!)

5. Flowers. My sweet friends came to disinfect my bedroom and prepare it for my recovery before I came home. They left flowers and magazines and little comforts everywhere. The flowers are amazingly uplifting. I think I want fresh flowers in my bedroom for the rest of my life.

6. Dog Trainer Kim. We were at the park at a dog agility class when my first bleeding happened. The paramedics rushed me off and (no coincidences) we happened to have driven in two cars so Josh was able to drive the kids to a friends' house and Chris took the other car to meet me at the hospital. But what about the dog? Our trainer, Kim, took our dog, Zephyr, and told us not to think about him. We didn't. We couldn't. She kept him for a full week!! Goodness!

7. Loaner Swimsuits. We moved the kids around a lot while I was in the hospital. One day here. Two days there. Chris' sister, Shauna, took the Littles to her house for 5 days of pure fun. Who can be sad when you are building a sand fort in winter jackets at the beach with your cousins? But somehow, in all those moves, Little #2's swimsuit got left behind. She takes indoor lessons at SwimLabs so we called them and the owners, our friends, said "No problem." The let Little #2 use a brand new suit and they called it a loaner. If any other little girl forgets her suit, she can use the new loaner. It's a small thing, but the small things matter. Each one is a blessing.

8. Meals. Our friends have fed my family for three weeks and will continue for a few more. It's an easy thing to do with a huge, HUGE, impact.

9. Texts. While I don't respond to most of them, I do read them all...eventually. An encouraging text or even just a silly one can lighten my day. I need that on hard days.

10. Fuzzy Socks. My feet feel better when they are warm. We've got to keep that circulation running. Normal socks were pinching but I got a pair of loose-fitting fuzzy socks for Christmas from Chris' Dad and they feel great. When your body is hurting, making even one little part feel happy is a big deal.

11. JAA Administration. My boys go to school together. They are on the same campus but not the same building and usually students are not allowed to move from one building to the other. But the administration has been so understanding of what my boys have been going through. They allow Junior to walk to the elementary buildings to check on Little #1 each day. Every single day! Junior gives Little #1 comfort which helps him make it through the day. Then Junior calls us to report on how Little #1 is doing. This has been going on since the beginning but I didn't know about it until a few days ago. I cried...big ugly tears. I was so happy that this little routine was happening. That the boys were leaning on each other. That Junior had been stepping up into that Big Brother role so well. That the school is allowing it. Blessings, blessings, blessings.

12. Chapstick. During my first stay in the ICU, the intubation tube did a number on my lips. I got a swollen lip and a few days later my lips peeled in big ugly pieces. Yuck. It's silly, but on my way to the ER the second time, I knew what to expect and I wanted chapstick in a bad way. Tracie to the rescue. She had a new tube for me ready at the ER and it never left my side for the rest of my long stay at the hospital(s). Comfort and blessings can come in small packages.

13. Homeschool Mommas (and Grandmas). Chris (my rad hubby) has taken over Hope's homeschooling for the time being. Folks, that's a full-time job. He lined up 4-5 friends to do school with Little #2 each day and then learned how to use my homeschool planning tools to keep things on schedule. My friends willingly and happily folded Little #2 into their school week and so far, things are running smoothly. This blows my mind!

There are so many more. And when I count them up, my little setback gets put into perspective. It's just one day. We are still on the path to recovery. Keep at it, one step at at a time.

Are you ever burdened with a load of care?

Does the cross seem heavy you are called to bear?

Count your many blessings; ev'ry doubt will fly

,And you will be singing as the days go by.

Count your blessings, name them one by one,

Count your blessings, see what God has done!

Count your blessings, name them one by one,

Count your many blessings, see what God has done

.(Hymn by Johnson Oatman Jr.)