Friday, October 11, 2013

A Strange Place

That is the best description of life right now that I can give.  It is a strange place.

I say that it is a strange place because there has been no other time in life that can really compare.  There is no 'point of reference' for walking this part of the path.  I'll be candid and say that there are times when it is very surreal -- It is hard to believe that this is actually where we are in life.

This is a strange place of trying not to live where we have not yet arrived, and yet still preparing for what seems likely to be coming.  When I think too much about what the future may hold, I quickly become overwhelmed.  When that happens, I remind myself to thank God for today and to ask Him to give me the strength I need for this moment.  I try to find blessings in that moment.  I don't know what tomorrow holds.  For that matter, I don't know what later today will hold.  I have to focus on living right now.

It is a strange time of waiting.  We are in a time where much of life doesn't seem to be moving forward, but rather standing still.  I'm not a fan of 'in-between times', but this is one I'm not ready to move beyond.  I'm doing my best to maintain where we are.

It is a time of strange perspectives.  Just a very short time ago, we wouldn't have called it a 'good day' if Trent were too sick or tired to go to work.  Now, it is a good day if he is able to eat something and is not throwing up, even when he is too weak to go anywhere.

It is a strange time for the kids, too.  Though we try to keep life as normal as possible, it isn't 'normal'.  The motion and commotion that comes with having 3 kids is sometimes too much for Trent to be able to deal with.  It is hard on the kids to always have to be quiet and slower than their normal pace.

This week, we turned over the responsibility of getting the kids to and from school to Trent's brother and sister in law.  Trent has had a couple of episodes of severe pain and nausea while he has been home alone and prefers not to be left alone as much as possible.  This has been hard on the youngest  -- yet another change.

We changed a couple of medications again this week, and we were able to get some IV fluids for Trent.  The fluids made a huge difference.  The doctor said that, if I think it helped, then he is willing to put in orders for more fluids as I think they are needed.  That was good to hear.  I have high hopes for one of the new medications -- I would love to see Trent get some relief and feel a little better.  He has definitely felt much better they past 3 days; and he was even able to go in to work for 2 hours yesterday.  He did have some kind of a medication reaction, though, this week.  I am in the process of trying to sort out which one - or combination - it may have been.  I think I may have figured it out and am testing my theory today and tomorrow, and I will see how things go.

We met the Hospice physician, Dr. Duane, this week.  He is very nice, and he spent quite a bit of time just getting to know Trent and where we are in this.  We also met our assigned social worker, Heather.  They each asked us, essentially, the same question -- "What do you see life like from this point forward?"  That's not an easy question to answer.  It's not something we want to think about too much.  We responded that we are doing our best just to live each day as it is given to us.  They were both surprised and pleased at our answer.  They said that most people enter Hospice care planning to die.  That would be a hard way to live.  I think I could sink into a state of despair pretty quickly if that were the focus of every day.  It is true that all of us face death -- our human bodies don't live forever, but I don't want that to be foremost in my thinking each day.  I choose to put my faith in God and trust Him with my future - with each of our futures.  I am choosing faith over fear.

Last evening, some men from church came over again to be an encouragement to Trent and to pray with him - to pray for us.  I am thankful for men who will do that.  I am humbled by their willingness to serve in that way.

So . . . here we are.  We are determined to live each day as God gives it to us; determined to see the blessings along the path.  We don't know what tomorrow holds, but we never did.  We place ourselves and our future in God's hands.  He will not fail us, and He has a purpose and plan for each step along this path; and for that I am grateful beyond words.


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  2. Such perspective can only be obtained by the grace of God. Thank you for magnifying the Lord through all of this, Elizabeth. You are a "teacher of good things," even though you didn't choose this course. "Sorrow is better than laughter: for by the sadness of the countenance the heart is made better." (Ecclesiastes 7:3)