Well, if Monday and Tuesday were like eating carrots, today was eating a tasty saltine cracker. Can’t say I’m crazy about saltines, but they sure beat out carrots any day.
But let me back pedal a little.
Tuesday honestly ended well, but my attempt at falling asleep was stifled by my body going haywire, because I’m a girl and that happens often, and I was still racked with grief and quite a bit of worry despite all intentions of releasing those doubts to God. I could feel my body wanting to shut down, my eyes were heavy, my posture slumped, but every time I found myself on the verge of dreamland, something inside me jerked everything awake with a violent wave of nausea and a slew of terrible fears. I wouldn’t even be able to stay awake long enough to dwell on any specific thought, my body was so tired, it desperately tried to find its way back to slumber land, but as if something knew I was finding a hint of relief in rest, my head felt yanked back, my stomach would tighten up, and my mind raced with fear.
This was one of those moments it wasn’t just a mental or physical game being played. There was a spiritual battle taking place and the battle field was my body. It was awful to say the least. I felt like I was being continually punched and kicked as I tried to curl up into a tighter ball to protect myself from the blows caused by whatever demons hovered around me. I began to cry in my sleep and I found myself in a cold-shivering sweat. I felt at my absolute physical limits and had no idea how relief would reach me. I wish I could have crawled out of my body and leave the corpse that was being ravaged by some force that I could not control with any pain meds or nausea pills. I couldn’t take it.
I swung the covers off my body and curled up next to my mother and whispered, “I don’t think what’s going on with me is just physical, can you pray for me.” And without hesitation, my mother wrapped her arms around me, laid my head on a pillow in her lap and began to whisper her prayers to God on my behalf. I could feel my body fall in and out of sleep again – I could feel a heaviness on my body that made me want to just become unconscious. She ended, “In your name, Amen.” And I in desperation of Jesus began to mumble my own prayers that I am not sure how much was even comprehensible as I felt like I was in and out of consciousness. I finished my prayer, “In your name, Amen.” My mother rubbed my back and I just laid there with my head on the pillow and tears dribbled down my face, but I wasn’t sad, I began to feel for the first time in hours, relief. The heaviness began to lift from my shoulders, the nausea subsided, the anxious thoughts, fears, and doubts faded out of my mind, and I felt cool and calm at last.
I fell asleep and didn’t wake till morn.
I remember as I was slipping into that deep sleep, I had the image of Jesus standing behind me with his arms around me and all around us was darkness, but it could not touch us. I could see it reach for me, but it couldn’t grab me, I saw it slink further and further away from us and I remember smiling.
It was a wonderful thought to have as I drifted into relief and though I didn’t sleep for 8+ hours (only about 5), it was just enough, it was what I needed, and grace was sufficient. I had never been so grateful for answered prayers.
Until the following morning.
The initial break has mended. My boyfriend did call me and one of the first things he said, “I love you to death.” And it was all I could do not to burst into happy tears – I might as well have, I had been bursting into sad tears for two days already, but my body is tired of bursting anything, so I contained my joy, but I am sure my smile was frighteningly goofy to passer-byers.
Needless to say, the turmoil over my boyfriend’s absence and carrot-flavored days has ended.
My mind is still filled to the brim with thoughts – good and bad – because of my grandfather’s current physical condition (which I know I haven’t really mentioned), if you’re my facebook friend, you know what’s up.
But along with the break of communication with my boyfriend, I was dealing with the emotional strain of having my Papa awaiting treatment for his dying foot. We are now looking at an amputation procedure of his right leg right above the knee. Whoa. Wait, what?
My Papa? Without a leg? The man I watched fly hot-air balloons, fly airplanes? Walk outside everyday to take care of the garden, pick pecans, take me to the zoo, drive us to his favorite catfish restaurant, run errands for Grandma, make model airplanes – my Papa? It can’t be. It really, just can’t.
I can’t even say I am “worried.” It’s just what happens when the body gets old and there is really nothing at all I can do to stop the deterioration of his body. I am pretty darn sad though. And tonight I reside in my grandparents’ home and I recall all the memories of my Grandma and Papa going about their daily routines and my Papa being active and as strong as an ox – and to see him weaker and dependent on others for everything, it hurts.
I can’t imagine how my mother feels.
She’s strong. She doesn’t seem afraid, but she’s admitted worry. And yet, she had the energy to hold my pathetic mess of a body and pray over me last night and hold me in my distresses?
I have an amazing family, don’t be too jealous.
Tomorrow will be a sad day, a relieving day, a day that will change our lives because it’s changing Papa’s life – we won’t be losing a leg, but we will feel his loss. And yet, he will continue his jokes, his laughter, and his mind will wonder how to solve world problems with new inventions. My Papa is amazing with or without his right leg.
There are obviously many emotions I feel that I probably have not explained well enough, but a lot is happening. I will rack my brain tomorrow better for another analogy that will put into better perspective my tangled mind, but for now it’s late and I’m tired.
Relief has come to me in many ways, I want that relief for my Mother, my Grandma, and my Papa.