Hold my heart

Aaron up and walking after his morning pain medication.

Caleb resting in the room across the hall from Aaron.

Sick, sweet little boy.

Caleb was hospitalized tonight across the hall from Aaron's room. He has pancreatitis, and one of his lab tests is actually 800 times higher than it is supposed to be. Somehow, the outlet of his pancreas has become blocked because of the swelling in his intestines, and the build-up of lipase and amylase (two of the enzymes the pancreas produces) is eating away at the pancreas now. The pancreas is important because it aids in digestion and it also produces insulin. Therefore, the ER doctor feels this infection is life-threatening to Caleb. The mortality rate of childhood pancreatitis is 10-90%. Please pray that it will heal, and that the doctors would know how to treat him. He also has a low blood count from the bleeding in his abdomen, low sodium in his blood, which indicates his level of dehydration, and his heart rate and respiratory rate are elevated, which tells us his whole body is very stressed out.

I don't really have words to express how I feel right now. Tonight, I went to see my friend's obituary and saw it was on the same page as my grandfather's. I sit in a hospital room with the two most important men in my life sick and not getting any better yet. I guess I contemplate what it would be like without them, just for brief moments it kind of hits me that I could lose them. When reality breaks into and destroys my sense of reality - i.e. I come to terms with the fact that the gift of their life is not now nor ever has been certain or permanent - the whole world seems to implode...sounds come caving in, my vision changes, I feel like I am losing touch with what I know. The slow stripping away of pride and control and self-assurance is gut-wrenching, agonizing.

Yet in the midst of the darkness come flashes of joy, beauty, light. God sent two small gifts to me today that were extravagant and unexpected. Truly, He cares for me - from the big needs like the health of my loved ones and grieving my grandfather, to the little ones like what to feed my family for supper. The gifts today were two cardinals, sitting in the middle of the road at two different times during the day. Cardinals are kind of my grandfather's "symbol". I felt like I had my grandfather flying along beside the car in the shape of a beautiful red bird. God was telling me His love is strong, and He knows what I need.

He is still there, listening, loving, lavishing. Even when the whole world stops spinning, even when you wake up to your nightmare, and wonder where the bubble you used to live in has gone.

Heavenly Father
You always amaze me
Let your kingdom come
In my world and in my life
You give me the food I need
To live through the day

I look out the window
The birds are composing
Not a note is out of tune
Or out of place

So why do I worry?
Why do I freak out?
God knows what I need
You know what I need

Your love is
Your love is
Your love is strong

Two things you told me
That you are strong
And you love me
~Jon Foreman, Your Love is Strong

One tear in the dropping rain,
One voice in the sea of pain
Could the maker of the stars
Hear the sound of my breaking heart?
One light, that's all I am
Right now I can barely stand
If You're everything You say You are
Won't You come close and hold my heart

I've been so afraid, afraid to close my eyes
So much can slip away before I say goodbye.
But if there's no other way, I'm done asking why.

So many questions without answers, Your promises remain
~Hold My Heart, Tenth Avenue North