Sorry for the lack of updates. Life has been impossibly upside down for the past two weeks. I’ll start with this one:
Anton went to the E.R. on May 22 at 1:30AM. He came home Sunday, May 27th in the evening. You can see my previous post for details. We are recovering…sort of. Lots of little complications keep coming up – but on the whole, we are miles from where we found ourselves even a week ago. He had 18 staples in his stomach, and now those have been removed, which makes him much more comfortable. He’s mobile and has more energy every day, which makes my heart so proud – because friends…this was an ugly two weeks. Every time he is able to do something new, I am beaming on the inside. We get a little piece of him back every day. It’s definitely a process of baby steps…
I have to give a HUGE shout of thanks for the multitude of people who appeared at our side during this situation. Our kids were scooped up in the arms of those we know and love and they were fed, cared for, bathed, played with, and spoiled – quite frankly. Can I tell you what that does for my mama-heart button? Days where I knew I could not give them my time and attention – friends lovingly stepped up and took them for hours at a time. Sometimes into the night. People came and prayed for Anton every.single. day that he was in the hospital. People prayed for us daily – from all over the world – seriously!
People came and sat in shifts so he wouldn’t have to be alone and so that I wouldn’t either. We received cards, gifts, letters, and even groceries. Our neighbors – some we don’t know well – have come to our home and brought food, offered help, and even visited Anton while he was in the hospital. Anton’s students made a pile of personal cards for him. People offered to clean our home, mow our yard, run errands, pick up and drop off prescriptions…on and on. Oh, and the meals! We are still the gloriously grateful recipients of meals every other day. Can I tell you how much this has ministered to us? How much love we have absorbed from this experience? I’ll tell you – we have been surrounded in a comforting zone of love and friendship like we have never known. I stand amazed at the goodness of people, and the grace of a loving God who provides just what we need through friends and family. What an amazing two weeks this has been.
I want you to know two things: First, that this was a very random and dangerous situation Anton found himself in, and he recovered/is recovering! Second, that we have learned many wonderful and valuable things through this two weeks of upheaval. And we’re still learning. Our take away is that God is so merciful and good. And we are so very thankful to Him for the skilled physicians and nurses who handled Anton with gentleness and care. So thankful for the blessings He showered on us during this bleak time. So grateful for His loving kindness…and I’m not just saying all of this. It’s not obligatory Christian babble. It’s the goodness of God’s mercy – new every day – that reminds both of us how precious our lives are, and what a gift! Every good and perfect thing, stemming from His unending love, showered over us. Our bodies crafted from the mastery of His amazing workmanship, intricate and precise.
And friends, I know some would argue – “why would a ‘loving’ God allow this to happen”? I’ll tell you what my dear friend Bonnie reminded me of recently – God could have prevented this, but He did not – and He does not make mistakes. And I have to tell you…I can see clearly how much the beautiful Body of Christ – our friends, our family – showed up for us and showered God’s love all over us. It was a LOVING reminder of what we are even here for – as my mother-in-love so often reminds me – to BE Christ to others. To reach out. To minister to people. To love on people. To DO for others. To lose “self” and to be able to care for others unselfishly. Such a difficult concept in this day and age…but I saw it with my own eyes come to life these last two weeks. It was so, so amazing. Such a vivid and refreshing reminder of how important loving others truly is – how important community is. God used what could be seen as an extraordinary difficult time, and He turned it into good by bringing so many people forward to care for us – reminding us how not a sparrow falls that He does not see. That provision…that extension of love saved us – truly.
I don’t think it matters how much you try to slow time and absorb everything and enjoy each moment and appreciate all you have – I don’t think it’s really possible. Because the minute something drastic happens – everything feels so overwhelming. So to that end, I will say only this: love your family. Hug your children. Kiss your spouse. And reach out to others in need. If you see a need – be there to offer help. I can’t tell you what a difference that help meant to us and it brings it home how important it is that we take care of each other.
We stand grateful and amazed…