Friday, June 21, 2013

A Fragile Eggshell

This is a picture of my beloved husband taken in 2008 before he was diagnosed with COPD. He holds my heart and words cannot express how deeply I love him or how deeply he loves me. We are two souls joined together by God.

I took this picture in our camper. Oh, how we loved to camp. He would fish during the day and I would sit at the campsite and write. Evenings we'd spend by a campfire, enjoying conversation and sometimes just quiet times.

On Father's Day this past Sunday, he was rushed by squad to the hospital due to severe breathing difficulties. On the way he stopped breathing, but the wonderful paramedics kept him alive. At the hospital, he was diagnosed with pneumonia and a urinary tract infection. With COPD pneumonia can be fatal.

He was moved to intensive care and has been fighting for his life. He is on a ventilator and heavily sedated. Other complications include a decrease in heart function to 15% ejection ratio and a recurrent fever. He had several lethal arrhythmia episodes and lost his pulse, but recovered without needing to be coded. He is in severely critical condition, but continues to remain stable.

Seeing him like this has been the most difficult thing I've ever faced. I am strong in faith and Jesus has been carrying me most of the time, because I'm not strong enough to walk. My heart is breaking. I describe myself as a fragile eggshell that is beginning to crack. I don't have any place to feel safe now. When I come home to rest, there is something vital missing in the house. But here, where no one can see me, I cry.

My eggshell is beginning to crack and I feel hollow inside...anxious, fearful, and with a hurt that cannot be described.
Why am I writing this in such a public venue? Because our time together is so short and can be taken away at any moment. For the past three years, I have been my hubby's caregiver. Now he is in the hands of the LORD and the hospital caregivers. While I cling to hope, there is a strong probability that he will never come home with me again. Don't take a moment of time for granted. Let your loved ones know you love them today and every day.

 Ecclesiastes 3:1-2a  For everything there is a season, a time for every activity under heaven. A time to be born and a time to die.

Ecclesiastes 3:4  A time to cry and a time to laugh. A time to grieve and a time to dance.

Friday, June 14, 2013

Where He Leads Me, I Will Follow

Last week, I received an email from someone I didn't know. She had been to my website and looked at my crochet ministry blog. She saw where I give prayer shawls and hats to people in need. I have done several by direct request from family, but most of my projects are donated to our church prayer shawl ministry and distributed as needed.

This lovely lady asked if I would give her a shawl and hat. She lives in a small town in another state and has very little family. She has undergone two surgeries this year and has been diagnosed with triple negative breast cancer. Her journey will be long and difficult.

I emailed her back and told her I would be happy to make her a shawl and hat and asked if she had any preferences. She loved the lavender colored shawl on my site, but liked the shell wrap pattern. I told her I would do my best to fulfill her wishes.

Truly I didn't know if I'd be able to find the yarn in the color she wanted. The yarn for the hats requires a worsted weight yarn and the pattern for the shawl calls for a lightweight yarn. My favorite store to look for yarn is Hobby Lobby because it is a Christian-based store. I love listening to Christian melodies while browsing the shelves.

This was a week of short funds since we had to wait three weeks between paychecks, but I felt called to get started on this project right away. So I headed off to Hobby Lobby to begin my search, fully expecting a multiple store search to find what I needed.

As I walked down the aisle toward the yarn section, I found an end cap featuring "Effervesce" yarn. Right in the center of the display was this lovely lavender colored yarn. This was a worsted weight yarn, very soft, and there was just exactly enough to make the shawl and a hat...all of the same dye lot!!

I know this was God-orchestrated and all doubts fled. I had a $10.00 rebate card and another rebate card with a little over $6.00 on it. The difference was about $24.00, affordable!

The yarn is a dream to work with and the shawl is going to be beautiful. My heart is happy.

There are times when God moves us when least expected, but He will provide what we need to accomplish the task. I love when He calls me to special tasks, and through following His will, I am always blessed.

Matthew 25:37-40 "Then the righteous will answer him, 'Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?' The King will reply, 'I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.' "

Friday, June 7, 2013

Sleepovers with Grandma

Ever have one of those days where you just feel like hiding in a corner and crying for no reason? Yeah, me, too. In fact, earlier this week that's exactly how I felt. Couldn't explain it and couldn't quite shake it.

Then I began looking through some pictures and found a folder named "Sleepovers." I have two granddaughters who are close in age. These cousins don't get to see each other very often. So during the summer months, I planned a "sleepover with Grandma."

These were days when we three gals have a lot of fun. We shopped, did crafts, and laughed a lot. Of course, there was always eating out. Here they are goofing out at Steak n Shake. Just look at those beautiful smiles!

These are cherished memories. When I get one of "those" days, I pull out a memory like this and my sadness disappears.
Sometimes trouble and daily life can sap our strength. We become overwhelmed and feel the crushing weight of responsibilities and seemingly impossible odds. Those are the times when we need to turn to the LORD.
Psalm 62:8 "Trust in [God] at all times, you people; pour out your hearts to him, for God is our refuge."
When I felt that oppressing depression settling in, I turned to prayer. God is faithful in answering prayers. Thus, the folders of pictures...particularly one filled with smiling faces and memories of "sleepovers with Grandma."
With my hubby's current health, we can't plan sleepovers. I'm grateful for the ones we did have and the joy of looking back at pictures.