Prepare for the best
The last weekend of September, I was in church feeling overly agitated. The beautiful music, was muffled as crying children seemed to escalate everywhere. I kept thinking… maybe I’ve had too much coffee this morning! This was NOT normal. The next few moments I could barely keep my eyes open. It was NOT the sermon. As soon as the service was over, I darted to our van. On a normal Sunday, my husband patiently waits as I catch up with people, but not today. He didn’t notice I had left quickly as I sent our youngest son back to find him.
Once in the van, the voices of two of our children asking me questions were clear, yet I could not seem to answer. My husband asked if I was okay. Staring ahead, I realized something was off. Once home, I moved quickly with help, to comfortable clothing, hoping that the tenseness and uncertainty in my mind and body would ease.
Resting in our chair, where we once rocked our babies, my concerned husband insisted in knowing what was wrong. It was then I discovered I truly could not speak. I’m sure our teens would jokingly agree this could have been considered a miracle. Tears began to roll down my face as I scanned the room, wondering what may be happening. My body felt heavy and tired as my head dropped.
With great effort I was able to utter TWO names. My husband understood and quickly called our neighbors. They are both nurses and work long hours at different times of day. Yet THAT day, they were together, pulling out of their driveway and made it to our home in seconds. I cannot tell you how many times this couple has lightened our load in life with their generous, caring hearts.
After their evaluation, much to my dismay, an ambulance was dispatched. As they lifted me inside the emergency vehicle, I heard one EMT ask another where I had been. He joked about never coming out of church the same as you go in. Humor was good. The words “hot or not?” flew over me as the sirens began to wail towards the hospital.
Reality hit me during the short ride. I lie still awaiting tests for my stroke like symptoms. During this time alone, I discovered that I was not fearful. My thoughts were of our family and how they would do if this were to take me. I knew that God would equip our family as needed. The thought of seeing our son again put a smile on half of my face. Mama’s of loss, do you get me?
I was checked for broken heart syndrome and agreed it was certainly possible! Over two days, the test results were good, not a full blown stoke. However, I was warned that this “mini stroke” is a warning of a future one. The question was, “what would I do to change my stress levels or health habits?” Things that make you go hmmmm.
I did not realize the extreme stress our bodies go through during loss. I’m certain someone told me, as I kept creating more ways to fill my days. 🙂 Please remember to take care of yourself. If people around you don’t understand, be thankful and pray to be surrounded by loving, empathic people, that have possibly walked this path before you.
Since October 1st, I have began preparing for the best. It was what I did before losing our son five years ago. I simply forgot, in the fog of grief, that I CAN do all things through Christ who strengthens me! (and you can too!) Prepare, expect and pray for the best each day. The pain of loss never goes away, it simply changes. It becomes bearable.
You will smile again, even if you don’t want to. Someday you will not just survive, but thrive in joy by God’s grace! Walk outside, look up and be happy for what you have, or had. Prepare for the best ~ and accept what we feel, may be our worst. Pray, praise and give thanks in all circumstances. We are not promised tomorrow friends. Keep that attitude of gratitude! It makes ALL the difference!
Peace & Blessings,
“And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life?” Luke 12:25
Photo: Senior photos with Connor. I was not expecting to be IN the photos when the photographer asked me to smile. Boy am I thankful that I did! Go out and enjoy today friends!