Archive for the 'Prayer Requests' Category

When it rains, it pours! BUSY day today!

Ok, so my best friend’s mother was admitted to the hospital last night after having a mild heart attack. This is the friend that I work for, so I knew today would be somewhat hectic since I would need to get orders packed up for her and then tonight Meagan was having her Un-birthday party. I did not expect it to be SO busy, though. LOL  We’ve had a veritable downpour of difficulties in the last 24hr!

This morning I needed to take Matt to get bloodwork done before his endo appt next week. Since he was staying the night with my mom last night, and I knew I needed to go in and pack orders today, I arranged for my dad to drive Matt back into town today. That didn’t go as planned. My mom called and said that my grandfather (dad’s dad) was in the hospital with what they thought was a ruptured gall bladder. Dad and my youngest brother were on their way to the hospital. Mom was staying behind because she’s been having some dizziness the last few days. Probably her Lyme flaring up after a very stressful week last week when their one and only car broke down and she had to hurry and find a new car to buy.

So Meagan and I went to my mom’s to pick Matt up around 9:30am or so. We still had several things we needed to do to get ready for her party tonight and of course I was going to have to get the bloodwork done, and go in to work, and go to the store! On the way, we prayed and asked the Lord to please help us to get done everything we needed to get done.

It’s been a loooooong day, but God is faithful! =)

First of all, my grandfather is doing great and should be able to go home tomorrow. Turns out his gall bladder had NOT ruptured, but was severely infected. They were able to remove it laprascopically so the recovery time should be very short as the incisions are only about an inch long.

Mike took Matthew and got his bloodwork done. I was able to get all the orders packaged up, AND was there to accept a new delivery of product, AND got that delivery documented, AND got a ton of other work-related stuff done (invoicing, etc).

A young lady from our church (actually, our church pianist) was such a blessing to me today! She took both my kids after Matt’s bloodwork was done and went shopping for me for the party. She also baked Meg’s cake for me, and then she came over and set up the decorations, too!

As for my best friend’s mom… the scheduled heart catherization this morning revealed she needed a triple, and possibly a quadruple bypass. =(  For awhile we thought they were going to be doing the surgery this afternoon, but finally they decided to schedule it for Monday at noon. While we are all glad that her situation has turned out to NOT be an immediately dire, life-threatening one requiring emergency surgery, we regret that now she will have the whole weekend to be worrying about this surgery. =/

In between about a jillion different work-related things popping up all day long, I was babysitting my best friend’s youngest until her other grandma could get off work and pick her up. My phone jangled more than a dozen times with additional prayer requests, as well. At least 3 other members of our small church’s congregation are also in the hospital today, and a couple more are sick and needing prayer as well.

Things are finally quieting down and I’m able to take a deep breath for the first time in about 15hr. LOL Meagan has two overnight guests and the three of them are in the living room watching  movie. I’ve made a batch of cookies for them, and there are chips and sodas and ice cream. What more do three teen girls need, right? LOL

I’m so looking forward to taking some Benadryl to get rid of my allergy-laden nose and climbing into bed!

This coming week will be busy, busy too with tdoc appt on Tues, an endo appt on Wed, Mission Conference Sun-Wed with meals Mon-Wed, FBI class on Thurs, and a bunch of burp cloths needing to be made for my new little nephew.

Even in the midst of the storm, though, life is good because God is good! =)

Sick of Failing at, and Being a ‘Single’ Mom

It’s 11pm and guess what. Both kida are still up. I’m so frustrated it’s not even funny. I am SO sick of practically raising these kids by myself. It’d be one thing if I really WAS a single mom… as in I was the only parent responsible for raising them and the only one around to do it.

That’s not the case, though. I have a husband. A good man who works hard to provide financial support for us. Unfortunely that’s just about the only kind of support he gives us. He accepts the fact that I’m sick, have been for a long time, and looks like I will be, and he supports me in that regard in so much as he understands why I can’t keep the house clean and rarely feel like cooking dinner.

So why, WHY???!!!!! can he not see I can’t raise these kids by myself and HELP? The kids are almost 12 and 11 and for 12 years now I’ve been not just the primary caregiver, I’ve been the ONLY caregiver. I can count on 3 fingers the times in the last 12 years that Mike has taken charge of ‘bedtime patrol’ and made sure the kids get ready for bed and get in bed. Even fewer are the times he’s done so and make sure they went to bed with all their chores done and all their medicines taken.

Every single solitary day, if *I* don’t make sure they take all their medicines, Matthew flat-out refises to do as he know he’s supposed and will lie to us that he’s taken his meds.

Now, even WITH his meds, Matthew is an extrememly rebellious, disrespectful, disobedient, rude, mouthy, selfish, proud kid. If he doesn’t take his meds it is easily 100x worse.

So make sure he takes his meds, you say. That’s fine, I do try. However there are times when I just crash. My body is fighting all these infections and even with all the help it gets from multiple high-dose antibiotics, it still wears me out. And of course, extremem fatigue is one of the lovely features of these infections I’m fighting.

So it happens that some days, I’m so exhausted I don’t even hear the TWO alarms I set each night. On the days that Mike is off, or he knows the kids do not have school, he will turn the alarms off and just let me sleep. That’s wonderful and so sweet of him, you say. Sure, but if he’s not going to make sure Matt gets his meds and then go to bed without even saying he’s going to bed, just disappear all of a sudden right when Matthew’s lack of meds REALLY starts kicking in, leaving me to deal with all the hate, filth, disrespect, threats, and disobedience he spews at full force by myself, then I would much, MUCH rather he wake me up!

I’m so sick and tired of being the only one who even attempts to get the kids to take care of their chores, school/homework, medicines, etc. The only one who even attempts to discipline them.

Maybe if he weren’t here effectively being a bump on a log, my attempts at disciplining, instructing, and so forth, would be more successful. Or maybe not. Either way at least then I wouldn’t have the frustration of having to deal with it all myself while their father, just as responsible for them as I am, plays his video games, reads his book, or sleeps through all the nonsense.

At least then I wouldn’t have the frustration and heartbreak of watching my husband, supposedly my best friend, my leader, and my protector stand by and do nothing at all about his son calling me horrible names, threatening to kill me, throwing things at me, hitting, biting, or kicking me.

I’ve alwys had this picture in my mind of the way a husband/father stands up for his wife, and disciplines the disrespectful child for not saying “yes ma’am” or “no ma’am” to her. As much as I know in my head that there are fathers out there who would do that very thing because it’s what it right and how God intended for fathers to be towards their wives and children, I just can’t make my heart really believe it. It’s like make-believe, pure fantasy.

I love my family so much. Even the selfish, proud, rebellious, hateful son I have.Even the thoughtless, selfish, lazy husband I have. Meagan has moments when she doesn’t thrill me as well, but I sto;; love her, too. I love them all. I’m just so very disappointed in the way a couple of them are turning out. It breaks my heart in so many, many ways.

I hate that I’ve failed to turn out two good kids. I know one is a good deal, but it’s not enough. I want ALL my kids to turn out good. I hate that I’ve failed, and I hate that their father has failed. I know Jesus can make things like this turn around 180 degrees, but I’ll tell you the truth, it sure doesn’t seem very likely for us. I have prayed for so many years, and while we did see a little progress once we were able to get Matt the medicine he needs, it’s been pretty sparse.

I’ve heard our pastor say many times that all our failures are prayer failures, so I guess that means I’m not doing such a great job at that either.

Oh I’m not going to quit trying, so I won’t say I’m a failure, but I have failed, and I don’t know anything new to try or to change to NOT fail again. Most days my son’s future looks very. very dark . 

I’m just so frustrated and tired of fighting what appears to be a losing battle, and doing so on my own. I am sure lots of truly single moms feel the same way, amd I understand that it is different for them. I understand that I can’t understand completely how difficult it is for them, since they are having to be a single parent AND a single provider at the same time. But I also don’t think it’s a stretch in the least to call myself a ‘single’ mom. I feel a closeness to single moms, I suppose you could say. I feel for them, because I have at least a small idea of what they have to deal with and face as a single parent.

I just wish that American fathers would start acting like true fathers. Get saved if they’re not, make sure they are if they are, and thenpick up a bible and find out how they are supposed to act and then listen to the leading of the Holy Spirit, and BE the kind of father God wants him to be. Maybe then us single and ‘single’ moms wouldn’t have to carry so much on ourselves.

It’d be really great if they would also learn what God expects of them as husbands, too.

A new adventure. Thanks, VA!

Mike got his new prescriptions in the mail today (VA). I am SO not happy with the supposed ‘care’ the VA gives. Or at least through this particular office.

He was put on Metformin last year with absolutely no instructions on anything having to do with diabetes. No diet info, no blood sugar level info, nothing. He called several times and even went back in to ask about a monitor and test strips, since we were thinking it was probably a good idea to test if he was taking meds to lower his blood sugar. The doc kept telling him there was no need and so he never got a monitor.

Since we had no way to test to make sure his levels weren’t getting too low (and his levels at the doc’s were only just barely high), he just quit taking the Metformin.

He had another checkup last week and I went with him this time. This time he did get a script for testing supplies along with the Metformin, cholesterol med, nitroglycerin, and inhaler. Still no information on managing the diabetes, though. He also got put on a waiting list for a sleep study so we can get something done about his horrible sleep apnea (granted it’s a years wait, but at least it’s in the works…).

Anyway. His meds came in the mail today. He now has an Accu-Chek glucometer, lancets, test strips, and something else that goes with it that says to use 1 dose a day to calibrate the glucometer. The problem is there was NO information or instructions on how to use the thing. So, we have all these new tools for managing his diabetes, but not a clue on how to use any of them. Lovely.

It’s a good thing he married into the family that he did. I have an aunt who is a diabetes nurse. Her whole job is teaching newly diagnosed diabetics what they need to know to be able to manage their condition. I’m hoping we can get her to meet us at my grandparents sometime soon and give us a crash course.

It makes me wonder about all those veterans who DON’T have access to that, though. How many other veterans has this doc put on blood sugar meds with absolutely no instructions on what to do to take care of themselves? How many of those are capable of figuring it out on their own? I mean some of the older veterans may have difficulties with memory or may even be Alzheimer patients. Does this doc prescribe meds to them the same way? That is– he enters the meds into the computer (says nothing about the meds in the office) and then a couple of weeks later they just show up in the mail.

Add to that the fact that they didn’t want me going into the exam room with him (I insisted) which tells me that 99% of the time no one is “allowed” in with the vets…

It makes me sick to think of how many veterans are getting such sub-standard care just out of this one office. =(

*update* Mike just got back from asking the pharmacist at Walmart for some help. Turns out the lancets the VA sent will not fit in the pen-thingy. Also, there still is no actual machine to READ the test strips. This thing that came in today is just for pricking the finger. >=(

The sick never stops!

So I haven’t been able to get on here and post or update the counts or much of anything lately because of all the sickness! Somebody stop the sickness, please! lol

Made a trip to the ER with Matthew today. He and Meg both just finished 2wks of Xopenex and Pulmicort neb treatments for their asthma. Some virus or something got them flared. Matt finished last Fri. Tuesday he had the growth hormone stim test (we should hear back in a couple of weeks). Friday he woke up coughing and having problems breathing so I immediately put him back on both the Xopenex and Pulmicort and kept him home from school.

Yesterday (Sat) he was VOLUNTARILY getting on the breathing machine about every hour and a half. Clue number one that he was sicker than his usual, since normally even in the peak of an asthma flare I have to fight him to get the treatments done. All day he did this. And all day he was still having difficulty breathing and coughing. Couldn’t even finish a sentence without coughing.

He started running a fever yesterday afternoon so I gave him a tylenol. I had almost decided to take him in to the ER last night, but he was doing a little better after the Pulmicort treatment last night, so instead I sent him to bed.

He woke up 2 or 3 times in the night and gave himself another breathing treatment. He did the same this morning. I knew last night he and I were going to be missing church so we slept in a little. Me more so. He didn’t come back in to wake me up again until almost 11am! He said that he’d done another treatment about an hour before but it didn’t seem to have helped at all and so were we going in? He was starting to sound scared, so I said “Looks like.”

I got up and got dressed, got the kids both dressed and away we went. Good thing Meagan had stayed home from church. Otherwise I’d have either had to go pull her out early or leave him at the ER to come home and pick her up, since church wasn’t due out for another hour or so.

They did a chest xray which apparently was fine since no one mentioned it afterwards, and also did a rapid strep since he was running fever and had a runny nose.

Guess what?

We’ve got strep! Poor kid. Anyway, I had to deny a shot of steroids because it would have only made the Lyme worse, so instead he got a SIX dose albuterol neb treatment and a tsp of Zithromax.

He can’t go back to school until Wednesday, so the baby-sitting my dad I was supposed to do tomorrow? Cancelled. lol My brothers will have to handle him themselves. Mom and Dad will have to go to the Lyme appt for Dad without me on Tuesday, too. I guess that’s a good thing, though. I was worried the doc might get upset with me because he told me Thursday to go to the ER because of my headache and I kinda sorta didn’t. oops. LOL

I’m just hoping now that no one else will come down with the strep! At least Meagan and I are still on antibiotics, so maybe we won’t get it.

Groceries and Dad again

That seems to be the standard theme around here lately. Probably because I’ve been too sick/busy to even THINK about anything else… let alone blog about it.

Went grocery shopping for the first time this month. I spent $80.82, so 82¢ more than my budget for the week, plus I still need bread. =(

BUT!!

I didn’t go grocery shopping LAST week at all. I’m still not ‘ahead’ because the week before I stocked up on the chicken which used most of last week’s budget.

However… =)

I am almost (I still need to get a little more ground beef stocked) at the point of being able to float by each week needing only the bare essentials replaced… milk, bread, cereal, fresh fruits, and toilet paper. LOL

I bought some soaps today, so aside from laundry detergent (which I will likely be making up a batch of DIY stuff soon) and dishwasher soap (which I will likely be trying to replace with vinegar and baking soda), I shouldn’t even need much in the way of non-food groceries for awhile.

I have shampoo, toothpaste, deodorant, liquid dish soap, bath soap, lots of ziplocs, etc. I even got stocked up on cat food (well, the canned stuff anyway).

Also, I got the kittens collars and bought a new phone. Both things were on my list to purchase with ‘leftover’ grocery $$ when I could, so I can scratch those off the list now and move on to the next thing. =)

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Tomorrow is going to be an interesting day.

Dad is still in the hospital, but they tried to send him home today. Mom said uh-uh because they still hadn’t gotten him eating anything more than clear liquids, nor have they given her any kind of instructions on his care or told her what is going on or what the plan is for his surgical site (still held together with what they call “spoons and wires”). Also he has been VERY disoriented and confused, not to mention depressed. He’s hallucinating, too!

He is aware that his brain is not functioning properly and when Mom said that if she needed to exercise her medical power of attorney to refuse discharge from the hospital (he wants to go home so bad, poor guy!), he told her that he hoped his brain cells would be functioning enough to realize that she is only trying to do what is best. So it seems that he is worried his brain is getting worse… or maybe he knows for sure it is getting worse… or something.

Anyway. It’s gonna be real interesting to see what happens tomorrow since the hospital’s infectious disease ‘person’ (an RN, not a doc) will be reporting Dad’s extremely positive ehrlichiosis (a tick-borne infection) test results to the CDC. His primary doc HAS been informed of the test results and so far has done NOTHING with them. This is an infection that is supposed to be treated if even SUSPECTED. In other words if the docs think you MIGHT have ehrlichiosis, they are supposed to start treating you with doxycycline before the test result comes back to confirm it. Why? Because it can kill you if they wait too long to treat.

Now obviously it did not kill him before the test result came back, but he should have been prescribed the antibiotics back before they drew the blood even! That was a month ago!

*sigh* It’s all just so frustrating and my poor mom is about at her wit’s end trying to get someone to take care of Dad!

Why is it…

whenever I finally manage to get an interesting pic to put up here I lose the stupid camera??

My brother borrowed our good digcam, so I had to resort to using the old one to snap a pic of the progress on the stocking. That was probably Sunday night. I went just now to find the silly thing so I could retrieve the pictures and I can’t find it anywhere! Go figure!

I’m too tired to mess with it much more tonight. I’ll look again in the morning. If I can manage to find it, I’ll snap another shot of the stocking (since I’ve worked on it a bit more since Sun.) and post both pics at once.

It’s somehow gotten buried under a pile of papers or something somewhere, I’m sure.

Things have been getting piled higher and higher over here the last couple of days because we’re back in “crisis mode”.

Dad ended up having emergency surgery (again!) Sunday morning, so I missed the am services at church for a start. The surgery went ok in that they removed a TON of scar tissue that was basically twisting and gluing his intestines together with his bladder and everything else. The surgery went not so ok in that they had to really pull him closed tight and hold him together with wires which is putting pressure (too much? they’re not sure) on his kidneys making his kidney failure more problematic. Then to top that off, they could not get a central line in (either time they tried) because of scarring from his PICC line before so they can’t monitor the pressure his kidneys are under. On top of *that* his left lung collapsed and they ended up putting two chest tubes in (one on each side) to reinflate it and prevent it from happening again. He’s also still on the ventilator.

He hasn’t eaten or drunk anything since last Tues, so they’re finally considering giving him some IV nutrients in the am. He “might maybe” be developing pneumonia. Oh and he weighed 122lb before surgery (he’d lost 8lb in about 4 days from not being able to eat or drink) and now weighs 142lb! He has been pumped so full of fluids he is swelled up like a balloon! His kidneys aren’t working properly so it’s all just accumulating in his tissues.

The biggest problem is that about a week and a half after intestinal surgery the intestines turn to tissue paper consistency and any minor irritation causes perforations. The docs are worried that the wires holding him together may do more harm because of this. The other possibility is that his kidneys can NOT survive the pressure caused by keeping him held together in which case they will reopen the surgical incision and leave it open. If they do that, his intestines will end up, according to the surgeon, as a mound outside of his body. Ordinarily they can then use a mesh screen of sorts to hold things in place while the skin heals. With Dad? Not so much. He scars so badly his body would just grow attached and around the mesh… like a tree grows around a rope or hose over many years. For Dad the only option would be what the surgeon described as a specially designed “plastic bubble” that they would put on him to protect the literally HANGING OUTSIDE OF THE BODY intestines!

*shudder*

That is NOT an image that sets well, is it? =( That’s not much of a LIFE, either. More like survival just for the sake of surviving. =( If that’s the only option, Mom and I both feel like it would be better for him to just go home to glory. We know Dad would not want a life like that either. =(

Basically he is as the surgeon put it… “between a rock and a hard place”, in which any one of a number of things could “do him in”.

Meanwhile, he seems to be doing somewhat better today. His hands were not as swollen or cold, he was calmer (probably because he was being reminded over and over where he was and what was going on), and he was less afraid he said. Well… he wrote actually, as he can’t talk on account of the giant tube down his throat.

I’m off to bed for now. Gonna snuggle in and read some before I go to sleep, I think.

Sense and Protection in a Storm, a Story of God in a Texas Tornado

I got a phone call from a longtime friend of mine on Monday. The first thing she said was, “Marie, we were in a tornado.” (I went by Marie in high school, so that’s what she is used to calling me.) Of course the first thing *I* said was “Oh no! Are you all ok?” After she assured me that her mom, all 4 kids, and herself were ok, so proceeded to tell me a story about God working miracles. I want to share.First a little background. My friend is a single, working mom to 4 kids. Her mom lives with her to help watch the little ones while she works…nights. She works as an aide in a nursing home while she’s waiting for the nursing school session to start in Sept, at which point she will be going to school to get her R.N. The town they live in is small, so the nursing home is not fully staffed overnight.

Sunday night she, one other aide, and an R.N. were on duty. Just about the time every one else left for the day, the sky turned dark and things went still. While some of the others at the home thought the stillness meant the predicted rainstorm was going to pass around them, my friend knew otherwise. She sprang into action, telling people there was a tornado coming. They started hustling getting the patients moved (most still in their beds, and many on oxygen) into the hallways.

Very early on, the R.N. was hit by glass and could no longer help, leaving the two aides to get the whole population to safety. My friend said she took one wing and the other aide took the other. She grabbed a pair of sunglasses and duct-taped them on. She grabbed a mask and put it on over her nose and mouth. Then she rushed around switching oxygen feeds to portable units, moving beds into the hallway and trying to direct the mobile patients into the halls.

There were a few in the lobby of the home, and the pressure and wind was such that my friend feared people getting blown or sucked away, so she sat down in front of the GLASS front door and braced herself to keep it from blowing open while the residents moved into the hall. When they were all out of the lobby, she too ran for the hall.

As soon as she got in the corridor, she says, the glass doors and windows all blew in. She said she could see huge pieces of glass flying into the corridor from either direction and knew she would be hit.

Just before the glass got to her, though… it turned to powder! I’ll say that again… it smashed up into glass DUST. So instead of being hit with giant shards of plate glass, she was hit with far, FAR less disastrous glass powder.

She was thanking the Lord, and praising God for being with her and helping her to know what to do and helping her to get it done and in protecting everyone.

The Lord held back the glass door blowing in until she was no longer sitting right in front of it. Because God gave her the sense to put on sunglasses and duct-tape them to her head, her eyes were protected from the bulk of the glass. Because He gave her the sense to put on a mask, she did not breathe any of the glass powder into her lungs. She was able to get all the residents safely into the hall, covered with blankets to protect them from glass before the glass started flying. None of the residents were injured at all, and all were later transported safely to nursing homes in neighboring towns. The R.N., while hurt, is ok.

When the storm was passed and my friend went outside to start the evacuation of the residents, she saw the home’s generator as well as a big tree limb on her car. The car was not dented, or even scratched.

She did have a lot of glass in her hair that she was still trying to wash out, and she had some glass slivers in her feet from glass getting in her shoes and then walking on it all night. She said her face felt kinda burned…like if she’d been in a sandstorm.

The biggest injury she sustained was some debri (glass?) in her eyes. Not a lot, she said, and one of the EMTs had given her some drops to put in them until she could see a doctor later in the week when the town got electricity back. She said her vision was a little blurry because of it, but she was oh so thankful for the Lord’s protective, guiding hand!

That call was such a blessing to me. Might sound funny, but if you could have heard the absolute EXCITEMENT in her voice when she was talking about how she KNEW God had been with her, helping her… About how she KNEW it was God that powdered all that glass, and that had helped her prepare for it with the glasses and mask. =) It was so cool to hear her so excited about that. I loved it!

I’ve been thanking the Lord for helping her, as well, of course! I love my daisytrippin’ friend, and hate the thought of anything bad happening to her. She’s had more than enough of that in the last 10 years as it is!

I ask for your prayers for her. For her eyes to heal,  and that the school (it was damaged pretty badly) will be able to have session so she can get her RN.


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