It's been nearly a month since I have been on here. And I feel like I have been around the world and back, in that amount of time.
Shortly after my last post, my almost 16 year old (because after all....that's what she would say with a 16th birthday right around the corner in July), sustained a minor injury that resulted in 6 visits to a total of 5 doctors, two MRI's, and a final diagnosis of RSD/CRPS.
Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy also known as Complex Regional Pain Syndrome.
Never even knew it existed.....and wish I still didn't.
I have learned all sorts of things in the past month....one being that RSD is not something you would wish on your worst enemy. I have also learned, that if you're going to have it, it's best that your bedroom not be gutted from a flood, and waiting on carpet to be installed. A mattress on a living room floor is not the safest place for someone in excruciating pain who has rambunctious little brothers. I'm just sayin'.
Over the past few weeks, I have worn quite a few hats.....some of them more glamorous then others. No one likes to have assistance getting dressed or undressed...especially when you're "almost 16". I have also been a hair dresser, make-up artist, waitress, seat belt fastener, chauffeur that has to be careful going over bumps, pharmacy technician (or at least it feels like it keeping up with multiple medications and times to administer), dietician making sure proper things are eaten, personal shopper, comedian (because you have to make people laugh in spite of their circumstances).....you name it.....I have done it.
Including, but not limited to trying to take the kids to the beach to see our beautiful white sand for what could be the last time for a while due to the oil crisis (another whole blog post).....only to realize how much work that was going to be. You see, I'm used to her being able to help carry half of the load, and forgot that in addition to not being able to carry virtually anything, she can't be in the direct sunlight due to a particular medication. Lovely. So after lugging everything out there and getting her set up in a chair with the umbrella, I'm thinking...."whew....that wasn't so bad, and thank goodness for this umbrella".....only to have not one, but TWO different men come over to us and ask us if we needed help stabilizing the umbrella. You see....to keep her whole body out of the sun, we had the umbrella sitting at what was, apparently, an awkward looking angle. So much so, that people must have thought we just didn't know what we were doing!! Here we are thinking what a great job we have done!!! It was hilarious. But the real clincher, was when the guy asks us if he can help, and I explain that she's on medicine that limits her sun exposure.....he takes it upon himself to ask if it's for ACNE!!!!!! (Are you kidding me?? You're going to ask a teenage GIRL if it's for acne??) CLEARLY he didn't think that question through, and frankly, I didn't need to know that he used to take that medication, though he felt he should share that information with us. We have laughed so hard about that.....imagining what we must have looked like with everyone else's umbrellas sitting up nice and straight and ours all jacked up sideways.
And did I mention that I now own stock in the local Red Box Movie Rental station??? Yep....I do. Because sometimes a movie is the only way for her to escape reality. And at $1 per movie....that's a cheap escape.
You see, we never know what life is going to throw at us. We just don't. But what we do know, is that God is in control of everything. He is always building character in each and every one of us. We have to learn to be teachable....and that is not always a pleasant experience. As a mother of four, I felt as though I had been through most everything. I was wrong.
The Bible says, that if we want to be great in God' kingdom, we have to learn to be the servant of all. Being a servant is easy when it is daytime, the sun is shining and we think we're going to get a quick answer, throw a band aid on, and move on. But being a servant gets much more difficult as the days wear on, the nights seem to grow long, fear of the unknown sets in, and tension is at an all time high. Suddenly, when your tired and exhausted, you no longer "feel" like being a servant. Especially when there are other people in the house with needs....but God calls us to set ourselves aside.
This has been a huge adjustment for the whole family. Everyone has had to hear me say, "No, I can't do that right now, I am trying to help your sister!" Or...."PLEASE do not bump into your sister....that HURTS her!" And how do you explain to a 7 year old something that even doctors do not fully understand???
The doctor is very hopeful that she is going to make a COMPLETE recovery from this, as it was caught very early, and she is so young. That was wonderful news, considering that RSD can be a lifelong battle. We are taking one day at a time, one event at a time.
One thing is certain. I do not take having healthy kids for granted...anymore. Life can take a turn at any moment and everything that "we" have planned can come to a screeching halt. But nothing takes God by surprise. Nothing. And I take comfort in knowing that He is going to be with us every step of the way.
I'm just sayin'.