Monday, January 11, 2016

Blessings In The Midst Of Suffering

Taking her temperature while playing with Christmas presents

My kids have been school "going" kids since September.  And the truth is that I miss them a lot.  Almost every day.  I say almost because sometimes they drive me crazy and I am all too happy to send them off to school.  But for the rest of the time, it is quiet and lonely around the house.  Grocery shopping, while faster, isn't as fun.  I have no one to take to the library.  No one to do projects with.  Or go on nature hikes with.  Which is why I was really looking forward to Christmas break.  Two weeks with my kids with time to do lots of fun things.  

Two days into break, Sunday, Joy came down with a fever and sore throat.  Monday Lizzy had a fever and sore throat.  I took the girls to the doctor's office for a swab test and sure enough, they both had strep.  Antibiotics and 24 hours of no fun.  But they would be fine by Christmas so all was well.

Wednesday Lizzy started coughing a lot.  And her fever came back.  I did my usual internet doctor thing and looked up her symptoms--they just didn't fit with strep.  Apparently she had something else as well.  So I called Dr. Grandpa and asked (begged) him to come listen to Lizzy's lungs to just rule out pneumonia, because surely it couldn't be pneumonia because we've never had pneumonia in our family.  And...she had pneumonia.  I sent Hubby to the store to pick up her new medicine and prayed her cough would go away within the next 24 hours so she wouldn't have to miss any of the Christmas festivities.  

I also prayed, and asked everyone I knew to pray, that David wouldn't get pneumonia because he has asthma.  And pneumonia + asthma = a really bad thing.  

Lizzy was remarkably improved after just one dose of the new medicine, but she was still coughing.  Hubby's family agreed she could come over for the family Christmas Eve party as long as she didn't cough around the babies or great grandpa.  

Christmas day at my family party was a no go due to my very delicate grandma and my immune-compromised aunt.  So we skipped Christmas dinner, but they agreed she could come for presents as long as she sat far away from grandma and auntie.  Yes, Lizzy was pretty upset and sad about missing out on Christmas fun, but we ended up having a good Christmas anyway.

When no one else started coughing, I was relieved that we had dodged that bullet.  So I made plans to have fun with friends and we managed to get a few things into the second week of break.

And then Wednesday morning I got the call that Grandma passed away.  All plans were put on hold, Hubby came home from work to be with the kids, and I spent most of the day helping clean out Grandma's assisted living room because she was only paid up through the end of the month, which happened to be the next day.  If the room wasn't cleaned out by the next day, we would be charged $5000.  

Sunday morning on the last day of break, Joy and Hubby spiked a fever.  Then the cough set in.  Dr. Grandpa was called in for a lung check, but Joy sounded fine.  Sick,but not pneumonia.  Monday I called Dr. Grandpa again for a lung check--she sounded fine.  Tuesday I asked for a chest x-ray because her fever was still over 102 and she sounded awful.  The chest x-ray showed pneumonia.  So Joy and Hubby (who was also still sick) went on meds.  Joy missed the whole week of school, and any activity exhausted her and required a nap.

Wednesday night David spiked a 102 fever and had a tiny cough.  Oh no!  Please don't get bad.  Please don't get bad.  I prayed; we all prayed.  Dr. Grandpa called me this time and told me to get David on meds ASAP so that his pneumonia didn't have a chance to set in.  God sure heard our prayers because David never got that sick.  I made him stay home from school Thursday because of the fever Wednesday night and he needed to be on meds for 24 hours, but he probably could have gone to school.  No fever on Thursday, just the small cough.  He went to school on Friday and was running around like normal.  That was a complete blessing from the Lord that David didn't get that sick.

Which brings us to today.  With everyone off to school and work, and me at home.  Sick.  With pneumonia.  I started feeling bad Sunday morning, and today I called the doctor.  But it's okay for me to be sick now because the rest of my family is fine.  Because that's how it works.  

So the blessings.  We only missed a little bit of Christmas.  We were all well for a few days so we could do fun things over break.  We got to see Grandma one last time at Christmas.  The tech who took Joy's x-ray "strongly suggested" we go upstairs to our doctor's office to have the doctor read the x-ray report and get Joy meds.  But he could neither confirm nor deny that she had pneumonia.  I just laughed and blessed him for doing that because it got Joy meds that day instead of having to wait until the morning (and by this point she was really bad and I was concerned I may need to take her to the ER).  David didn't get that sick, and he never had any trouble with his asthma.  I didn't get sick until everyone else was better.  My extended family was unable to have Grandma's memorial service until later this month, which means my family will be able to go because we will all be healthy by then (I pray).  And we got to spend LOTS of time together at home since, you know, we couldn't go anywhere.  

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