...is that Mike's body created it's own ability to
divert the needed blood flow to circulate around the blockage and take up the
slack for the now gone and useless artery.
At this point I have to say last night was the worst for both of
us. He could not articulate anything he
thought or wanted to say to me. He
couldn't follow the commands for the "speech" part of testing his
abilities every few hours. Moving arms
and legs were a breeze - touching his nose and the doctor's finger was no big
deal for Mike to handle. It was the
talking beyond yes and no that was his biggest challenge. My heart broke every time he tried, ending
with shaking his head and in tears. We
only heard "It won't" or "I can't" through each
testing. I witnessed a man who has
always known his way around a computer let a piece of paper with
"passwords" come between him and success. The only man on earth who was able to tame
this wild girl I call myself was totally lost in a world of wanting to say
something expected for hope of recovery.
And he couldn't - there was nothing I could do for my husband but wait
for him. As the night grew longer Mike
grew worse. I had said something that
actually drew a spontaneous laugh out of my husband during that harshness. As happy as I was to hear him laugh out loud
I realized that the right side of his face was no longer responding. And we still had not heard back from the
Specialist. Today was a very long day,
but somehow Mike was improving with each tick of the clock. I think every Therapist in the hospital
showed up in our room! But, it paid off
with both sides of his smile. His face
was back to normal and he was able to say what he remembered more readily, but
with one exception... Everybody was born
in 2000 something!!! LOL!!! We were instantly all young again! We could work with that if only the
Specialist would show up with the bottom line prognosis. And that took all day long. The man had "business hours" it
seemed. We were bottom of the list and he was wrapping up "his" day with "us" and our unanswered questions that had been burning through the night and into today. The Specialist put Mike through the paces again. Yes - there was still some lasting signs of his stroke, but no more paralysis of his face. Yes - over time he will recover with a more rapid response time. Yes - the blockage was permanent, but no operation would be forthcoming. Yes - Mike would be on medication to help his blood circulate easier. No - there should not be any lasting effects from this stroke after a period of time relative to Mike on his own volition. YES - ALL OF YOURS AND OUR PRAYERS WERE ANSWERED!!! The following video is dedicated to my husband, Mike Burnett...
How many times has your heart been broken by someone you've loved or cared about? I can't count the times I have trusted the wrong person and allowed my heart to be shattered into a million pieces. When that happens I think we become utterly speechless. We disappear into ourselves and replay what happened over and over again; trying to find where things went wrong. We beat ourselves up thinking "how could I be so blind" not to have noticed I was being used and no one was giving me a second thought. Often times we even go so far as to make excuses for the person who has wronged us. But, over time, and with an aching heart we learn to let go. It is never an easy thing to do.
Through the years I have basically trusted just about everyone in my life. I've allowed myself to be wronged over and over again; giving second, third, even more chances for those people to change and not hurt me. I would never give up. I never would let go. It didn't matter how bad my heart was hurting. These were my "friends" and I allowed them to take advantage of me; driving me to the point of developing panic attacks so severe I was sure I was having heart attacks. I finally realized that if I wanted to be happy I was the one who would have to do the changing.
It has taken some time to make some very necessary changes. It was so hard to turn away from those who had hurt me so often. I suppose my biggest fear was that I would be alone if I made the much needed changes. However, if I wanted to be truly happy I was the only one who could control it and make it happen.
At first it was so frustrating because I wanted changes to happen instantly. Little did I know that I would have to take "baby steps" to become truly happy. So, slowly, but surely, I began to make small changes in what I needed to do to let go. Letting go is hard and scary. Eventually, I realized those baby steps where allowing me to breathe easier. I felt the stress slipping away. Soon I was able to take bigger steps making the harder changes take place without feeling so guilty.
This morning when I made a phone call I finally realized that I was calling my best friend! We have known each other for almost (or just about) 10 years and have always gotten along. Whenever she answered I was always so glad to hear her voice, although this morning my voice sounded more like a frog and I had a severe ear ache. But, in my heart I felt compelled to call her anyway. It didn't matter that my ear hurt and I'm sure she thought I had turned into a bull frog, but she was willing to share so many things that had been bothering us both lately. We have both had to learn to let go. We both struggled tremendously; agonizing over all of the details and possibilities of things we were having to deal with.
In all of my years I don't think I've ever met someone who accepted me, "warts and all," or was willing to listen to me without criticizing. She has always been gracious and kind in every possible way. The thing is I've always known this about her. My friend always puts others first. She sincerely prays for those in need. She prays for those who aren't so nice and also the ones that have hurt her feelings to the point of tears and even goes so far to demean herself for all the "what ifs" she can think of. Only to do her best to put any blame on herself first. What a Godly Woman! And I know her personally! She never fails to show me the way no matter the circumstances. The funny part is (and I so love this about her) she'll say "Kay, can I ask you a question?" LOL!!! I smile every time she does that. She is so humble and I love her for it. Regardless of the fact that I almost die laughing when she asks that question! She wouldn't be who she is if she didn't ask.
I truly believe that God puts people in our lives when it's the right time; not our time, His time. Of course I have to say He has really given me some hum-dingers in my time. But, I know why. It has taken me a very long time to learn this. I'm so thankful that she was put in my life when I needed her the most. My friend has helped me more times than she will ever know (or admit) and I couldn't be more grateful.
Life is a gift we receive everyday. Sometimes those gifts are so unexpected. The unexpected ones I have to say are the best we could have wished for but didn't. They always show up when they are needed, least expected, can help the healing of a broken heart, open your eyes to new and better possibilities, and even show you the way to the Best Friend you never saw coming.
About 10 years have passed knowing this wonderful lady and my brain finally registered who my true friends really are. However, God threw in an unexpected friendship.
Thanks God! My BFF (I so really didn't want to use text code) is a keeper and I am so blessed!
In a few weeks I will see one of the dearest friends I have ever had, but not seen in almost 30 years. My heart is full, near to bursting, with the anticipation of seeing her. Over the years I have recalled time and again her awesome laughter followed up by her yelling my name as if she couldn't believe I had said or done something a bit off color. But she laughed a big laugh regardless.
I think, in life, we all have thatsomeone we will always remember. No matter what. It's that someone who made you feel special and accepted you as you are and was never embarrassed to be seen with you. To read this you would never know we really didn't spend a lot of time together.
It was at work mostly. So odd to look back and know I had only been to her house once. She even had a best friend (it wasn't me) at the time, and yet I cannot remember her name, but i can see her face just as clear as my friend's. Although I do remember the name of who her "bestie" married after I had moved away and left my friend behind stupidly following a man who had entered my life and I clung to for some reason if only to have my first born son. I remember my friend "running off" to get married during the work week. It was just like her; a no frills kinda girl. Although she wore the most expensive kid leather shoes a mother could buy for her daughter. And she wouldn't marry her fiance' until she could figure out how she wanted her name to be... with or without the hyphen - LOL! I can see her gorgeous engagement ring he had picked out just for her. The stone first, of course. I would have cared less what MY name would have been at that moment looking at that ring! But, that was her style. It was those kinds of things that mattered to her the most. And how I envied her. She had a man who adored her and waited for her to make up her mind. I should have taken a clue to that one... but, then again, it was just that kind of step in life that puts me where I am now. I, too, have a man who adores me. sigh.
So, we are making plans. Emailing back and forth trying to find the right accommodations for this, a momentous occasion. It is for me, at least. Over the years I have filled my shelves and walls with the cards she would make and never forget to send; framed and always where they would catch my eye. Giving me the moment I might have needed just then, remembering my friend and that most awesome of laughter's that can never be replaced. What peace it has brought me through the years filled with rough patches. I never needed to call her during those rough patches. All I had to do was remember...
And now, finally, the time is so near that I'm pure giddy having to wait to see her. I had been really upset this week because the rest of my family (you know - parents, siblings, and other sorts of relatives, etc) are all going on a 7 day cruise; something we can't quite afford. It was eating me up! I'm surprised my husband would even come home from work. It took a few days before I could come to terms with it. Not even my own mother would utter a word as to what or why we weren't going with them or even give me hope that we could. She is not an instigator. She knew I had to work this out on my own. (Would you believe I'm 53yo?) Their port of call is the same town my friend lives in and it finally dawned on me that just maybe this was the time.
A ship is referred to as "she." All I could see before me was that this was a vacation of a lifetime. To be with my entire family; my father growing older and before all the kids are grown and gone. It is only now that I realize my friend, "She" is, has been, and always will be A Lifetime.
Although I spent Wednesday in a kind of funk, tired, achy, hurting from several different things I was dealing with I am always aware that I AM BLESSED! I believe we can hurt and feel blessed at the same time. Kind of like crying happy tears.
On Tuesday I had a dentist appointment - no biggie - but had to get a numbing shot to have some enamel work done. This was followed by an appointment with my dermatologist. When you drive up into the parking lot you get the feeling you are driving into a "resort" because of the way the building and surrounding area looks. And, it's calm and relaxing as you walk in. But, that was not what was in store for me. I had been experiencing facial peeling that was so bothersome! I had to get this taken care of. As I said, little did I realize what the doctor had in mind. It was a full on body search!!! Oh My! By the time it was over I had several biopsies and a skin tag removed from right under my left eye. Try to be still the next time someone comes at your eye with a pair of scissors... You don't dare move and "heaven take me now if I move!" As I looked at my doctor and addressed the skin that seemed to peel continuously from my face (try putting on makeup while your skin peels) she said, "Good! We want your skin to peel. You will never have wrinkles. I will call you next week about the biopsies..." as she left the room.
I left the building in a daze. Was I happy being 52 years old and understanding my face will never wrinkle? Ok. I AM BLESSED! I was glad the skin tag was removed, but it really hurt! I didn't have to have stitches. I AM BLESSED! And, what about those biopsies? Well, I was "walking" out of the building without having to "pay for services rendered." That was A BLESSING! I was walking and had spent no money. Doctors are expensive and we have a very high deductible. By Wednesday I was tired and sore. I could barely keep my eyes open. But, I AM BLESSED because I am a "stay at home mom."
As I sat in my favorite chair, doing nothing, I considered my options. I AM BLESSED because after assessing my physical "condition" at that moment I called my husband and asked if it would be possible for him to leave work early so he could go pick up our son from school. Honestly, I could have done it myself like I do every Monday through Friday. However, for whatever reason I could hardly keep my eyes open. I suppose I had "internalized the stress" from my doctor appointments. I have learned over the years that my body will take over if I don't. That means I sleep. My body and mind get together and decide I need to sleep to get me through my "stress" or I will be in no shape to do anyone any good; least of all my family. When I made the call to my husband I explained I felt it was best that I didn't drive. I didn't want to take a chance getting behind the wheel of my car to pick up my child from school and putting us and someone else at risk if I didn't trust myself to be fully alert.
I AM BLESSED! There are many women who do not have the luxury of calling their husband, let alone anyone else, to go and do something for them at a moment's notice. Regardless of their physical impairment, no matter how big or small, they cannot make that kind of call. Are we rich? Monetarily, NO! We live in an old neighborhood, riddled with crime, in a small house, with our share of debt. However, WE ARE BLESSED that my husband has a job with a great boss who believes in FAMILY.
However, OUR BLESSINGS come from the fact that after 2 very long years of my husband having lost a job of over 33 years we put our FAITH IN GOD to take care of us because we didn't have any options other than just that. And, when you finally realize God is all you have, then God is all you need. As they say in the south, "proof is in the pudding." My husband and I, both come from a long line of worriers and I just couldn't worry anymore. I was tired, and I was angry. I was tired of being angry. So I looked at my husband and said, "I cannot worry about this any more because it will surely kill me."
The damage was already done. All of the stress in my life leading up to that moment had already taken it's toll on my body and I was paying for it BIG TIME.
My prayer: Dear Father, I cannot bare this another moment. I'm so mad and angry over the loss of my loyal husband's job of over 33 years. We have nothing to fall back on. No degree to get his foot in a door for any kind of job that will pay our bills. I cannot work due to my health. And we have a little boy who depends on us. All I can do is ask you to take these huge worrisome burdens and carry them for me. I ask for your divine intervention in this moment of our lives to help my husband find a job that will support us and that he will not have to worry any longer. Lord, he is pounding the pavement, mailing out resumes, and making phone calls day in and day out. I have never seen anyone work so hard to find a job. We are fortunate that my brother gave him a part time job paying minimum wage stocking groceries and I thank you for that. My husband is truly a humble soul. He is 58 years old and being bullied by a 20 something year old boss who berates him daily because he isn't stocking the shelves fast enough. I have never seen such humbleness and I am ashamed that I am not that kind of person. Father, my lesson is learned and I see now the truth behind the humble. I know that all things are done in your time and not ours. I pray for guidance, a softer heart, the removal of anger, and to remember that you come first. I am truly BLESSED to have such a husband who can humble himself to do whatever it takes so that his family is fed. Forgive me for my harshness and help me to understand that there is a reason for this time in our life. It is in your will that I pray these things. Amen.
I prayed that prayer about 2 years ago. I will never forget it. Within weeks my husband got a call for a job offer of a nature we never would have expected. My husband works with computers. He was in television. He is now maintaining the simulators our soldiers train on before they go to war. His first day he was told 2 managers had to fight over him to see which department would have him. His second day my husband was promoted. The third day the realization set in that our health insurance was in affect as of day 1. Every day he wakes up and takes our son to school on his way to work.
Every night we put our son to bed with A PRAYER THANKING GOD FOR OUR MANY BLESSINGS.
This week I began a Bible Study, a devotional. I believe that I have LONGED for one and really hadn't realized it. Over the past few months the internet has been flooded with everything "God" and any and all manner of posts regarding "If you love God..." LIKE!
I LIKE! I LIKE! I LIKE!
No - I WILL NOT FEAR!!! Because God is with me each and every step of the way. He always has been. My problem was not remembering it. I was too focused on LIFE and what was happening, or NOT. But I was DEVOTED to the here and now in such a way that I literally lived "unglued." Nothing was what it should be. What should be IS - THE GREAT I AM! And, I wasn't devoted to HIM. I was devoted to me, mine, ours, yours, theirs. Not HIM. I left God on the back-burner of my life as I was racing through it and I needed him so desperately. Oh, I attend Sunday School and Church and Wednesday night Prayer Meeting. Prayer time before we put our little one to bed each and every night. But where was my DEVOTION to GOD?
At the beginning of this year I found "Proverbs 31" and signed up for a "365 Word" that I thought would get me really motivated. My word - TRUST. I put my word into action. Well, my kind of action. The kind that when I read my bible and came across MY WORD it would get highlighted in yellow. It was a start, right? A start. But "Proverbs 31" kept my attention and soon I was seeing talk of bible studies online. Online is becoming more my style of late. It works! I don't have to get dressed (out of my pj's) and drive somewhere to wait for everyone to show up before we could start the class. That got old real quick. MORE STRESS!!!
I needed LESS STRESS and BAD! I'm glad I kept in touch.
I was truly excited about this Bible Study beginning. I looked forward to it. That made my heart glad just knowing that I was in that state of mind.
This first week I have followed through. Something I'm not good at. (We will see if I'm successful with the Blog Hop thing - hmmmm - I'm really hoping I can do that part.) But anyway, I went step by step, following all of the instructions as I began the bible study, book in hand, the scriptures to read; loved the idea of "verse mapping!" I became very detailed in each step. I was paying attention to what the scriptures were telling me...
"Let go, and let God!" I found this in "The Search for Serenity" and the 20 seconds of insane courage. TRUST! My "a-ha moment" came then. If I am to TRUST "The Great I Am" then how can I be AFRAID? As I read the scriptures for this week with the suggestion to read the ones surrounding them I found that they all came together in one big "TRUST" without fear because HE will hold me up and give me victory!