I can’t even remember what day it is anymore. I think today is Saturday but I wouldn’t put money on it and someone told me August is here. It’s been a long week to say the least. The last two days have been a whirlwind of emotion. It all started with visitors yesterday.
Kendrick and Carter arrived a little after noon. There was a knock at our door a then a pair of big brown eyes popped up to see in the window. Izzy smiled from ear to ear when she saw her big brother peering in. They sat in bed snuggling for nearly an hour as they watched cartoons together. For just a moment all was well in the world. Then they started laughing and Carter very dramatically threw himself on the bed hitting the lower portion of his belly on the bedrail. Even though the impact appeared minimal he began to cry.
A half-hour later he was still crying. I thought he was overreacting, perhaps due to all the instability in our home lately. But after another half-hour I started to get concerned. He wasn’t crying anymore, he was now screaming. Nothing I did consoled him. I tried to lay him on the couch in the corner of her room but there was only one position that seemed tolerable. Any movement to his legs or abdomen made it worse. Time passed and he just kept screaming that his tummy hurt.
In my book, if your child is in too much pain to walk or sit or lay down, something is wrong. And ninety minutes is my cutoff for a real problem. I don’ know why, but it just made sense in my head. I got a wheel chair from the hall and took him downstairs to the Emergency Room. As I walked from our room to the elevator listening to the screams of my son I began to lay into the Lord.
“You expect me to believe that you have my back?” I questioned. “This is ridiculous. I am going through the most devastating season of my life and where are you? Within one week a tree has fallen on my house, the alternator has gone out on our car, I get the devastating news about the timing of the harvest and now this? What are you doing?”
I stood staring out the windows in desperation as we waited for an elevator. I could feel the woman next to me staring at us. “Are you mom?” she asked. No, I worked for housekeeping, of course I was mom.
“Yes,” I said, smiling politely as I got on the elevator. I could feel that her eyes weren’t leaving me. With soft white hair and silver rimmed glasses I guessed her to be a grandmother. Her husband stood by her side and kept to himself saying not a word. He in fact, never looked at me.
“It doesn’t look like he feels very good,” she said, glancing down at Carter who was grinding his teeth through his tears. No kidding, lady. I seriously did not have time or energy for whatever kind of chit chat she had in mind. I was having a nervous breakdown. I was in the middle of a freaking crisis of faith and all she wants to do is…
“Would you mind if I prayed for you and your son?” she asked, as I stood, jaw dropped to the floor of the elevator. What? God had interceded my crisis of faith. As the elevator door opened I led her over to a quiet corner and through my tears told her how much I’d love for her to pray.
I told her our story briefly and she began. I don’t remember everything she said but I do remember two things. Number One: Carter stopped crying as she prayed. Number Two: At the end of her prayer she said the words from John 10:10 “The evil one comes to steal, kill and destroy, but I have come that they might have life and have it to the full.” Remember, the same verse I said earlier that I would continue to pray over both my children until their healing came? How about that?
If I had had that encounter at any other time than that moment it wouldn’t have meant as much. If her prayer had referenced anything but the exact verse it wouldn’t have meant as much either. But that’s the way it played out. And that’s what I’d call a Divine Encounter. God did what He had to to get my attention. In the midst of my desperation he reached down from the heavens to be sure I knew He was still there. So now in answer to my original question, “You expect me to believe you have my back?” I do.
I still spent five unpleasant hours in the Emergency Room with Carter. Nothing some Morphine and an enema couldn’t handle. X-rays showed things were just a little ‘backed up’ and the fall caused some pretty extreme cramping or something. And once again, I will not tell you that they were awesome and that I sang praise songs the whole time. They were hard, and I was sad. But as I sat alone in the ER next to my son’s bed I could not forget what had just happened.
Today Izzy’s feeding tube had to be re-inserted twice. They kept us an additional night to see how things go tonight and tomorrow. She has a really extreme gag reflex and continues to gag while the feeds are going down. This leads to sometimes throwing up the tube. If it happens again we’ll look into other options. Her counts have already starting dropping so a standard tube directly in the stomach isn’t an option now. The surgery that tube would require has to be timed just right. They discussed IV feedings today. We’ll see I guess.
Well, I’m off to bed. Tomorrow is a new day and His mercies will be new. If only I will take them…