Rachel is showing us she is quite the fighter. Something that those of us close to her already know! She is beginning to respond to commands - like wiggling her toes when she is told or giving us a thumbs up. Her medication has been decreased and we see her respond to the pain - a hard thing to watch, but also another good sign (the one time I witnessed this, I could tell she was in pain and I was ready to go tackle the nurse to give her some medication, but I didn't want my visiting privileges revoked) We feel her squeeze our hand when she likes something we say. We also see her get agitated when there is too much going on and we must leave. Through this she is showing us her fighting spirit!
As I have mentioned earlier, Rachel did not have many other injuries to her body, except to the eye area. She was due to have surgery to repair her eye today, only for my parents to receive a phone call that the doctor's wife went into labor today. This surgery should now take place early next week. I have to admit, I chuckled a little when I heard that news.
Getting back to a bit of normalcy lately has been kinda nice, but still a struggle. Being a mom of three kids with a husband that works many hours, I find myself going back and forth between the kids and spending time with my family at the hospital. I want to spend more time at the hospital holding Rachel's hand, but find that I am only able to squeeze in a few hours here and there. Getting time to go to the store or watching the kids participate in their gym classes has been what I have needed too. But, I also find there are times I want to scream at people, "No, I am not interested in meeting with you to talk about life insurance, I have other things on my mind right now! Oh yeah, and thank you for reminding me that I am gonna be another year older next month!" Instead I tell them politely that I am unavailable at this time. Sigh!
I've been debating on what to write about for this next part of my blog and I think I'm gonna go with the thought that has been on my mind the last few days and that is "I'm Catholic and I Know It"! I heard a teacher say this once last year and it brought quite the laugh to our group. This is not a push to the Catholic faith, this is a push to find the church that is right for you to deepen your faith and bring you peace in your life. It took many years of searching until I decided upon the Catholic church. As I was deciding on a school for my oldest son Allan, I really wanted him to go to our local Catholic school. I realized at that time that I could not expect my son to learn something that I did not know about too. So, I went to my first Catholic Mass. Now, for those of you familiar or somewhat familiar with Mass you know that there is a lot of standing, sitting, kneeling, "and also with you's". There are not big screen tv's, electric guitars, coffee stands in the corner (nothing wrong with any of that - just not for me, that's all). It would definitely be easy to feel lost and confused if you didn't know what to expect and are a person used to holding her Starbucks cup with her during church. But, the amazing sense of peace that I experienced during that very first Mass, I knew I was hooked! So, I kept going. I enrolled my boys in Catholic School, I got involved in their school and Rick and I began the RCIA process.
St. Susanna has become my second family and I still find peace when I attend Mass, I come out learning something new every time and I am able to watch my family grow in their faith every day. Going through an event like this, I have found that my second family has wrapped me around their loving arms. We have received several visits from Father Glenn - he has blessed and anointed Rachel. He has shared other stories of encouragement, for he has visited many with similar situations. He is always uplifting to all when he visits. He didn't know me or my family, but he came to visit anyways. Rachel is on the prayer chain. The kids at school all say prayers for her in their hearts.
Surprise visits from friends bearing food and diet coke? Check
Need a meal? The moms club provides meals.
Cold? Here is a prayer shawl for you.
Watch the kids? Let me take them for you tonight.
I have been so overwhelmed by all of the generosity that has been given to me and my family. My kids ask me why I am crying - I tell them they are tears of happiness for finding a place so good to all of us.
So, again, I am not saying go run to your nearest Catholic church and join, just keep searching for that special place that holds that peace and community you are looking for. I searched for quite a while and wanted to give up at times, but I am so very thankful that I was able to find what I was needing in my life.
Thank you to all for bearing with me as I struggle through the ups and downs of this experience. I am learning more about myself and strengthening my faith along the way. As this happens, I find that I like to share what I am learning and for that I thank you! (I must admit, I've become a bit addicted to this whole blogging thing :)
P.S. - I think my next update will be about the power of prayer - food for thought, until we meet again.