Wednesday, December 21, 2005

This day last year

Is not a day I wish to re-live. Yet I cannot forget it.

Until last year December 22nd was remembered as my late mother's birthday.

Last year husband was so ill he didn't get a wink of sleep, and neither did I. He had to go to the toilet about, we've lost count, twenty times? during the night, throwing up both ends.

He suffers from an inflammatory bowel disease and was on heavy medication with very undesirable side-effects. His condition was so serious that this standard medication did not work on him. He was also very susceptible to infection and something triggered off this horrendous flare-up.

After that sleepless night I emailed family and friends all over the world to say: Pray! If he couldn't keep his food down, he would have to be put on a drip. That means being in hospital over Christmas. That would have been quite unthinkable for young son. I also needed wisdom as to what to feed him to get his energy back.

Meanwhile, we had invited a girl who was going to be on her own at Christmas to eat with us. We were not sure whether we would be having Christmas at home at all. I had to contact her to give her a chance to make alternative arrangements.

We had ordered food which needed collection. I had to ring a friend from church to go on 'stand-by' in the event that we could not go collect this order ourselves.

Son's godfather and his elderly godmother were to be picked up at the airport. I had to try to make alternative arrangements for them to be picked up as well as try to get a message to him. No, the airline was not very helpful.

And on and on it went. Frankly, at that point, I really didn't want to bother with all those other people. It was more important that husband could get out of bed and eat. We've had many episodes before when husband just could not get out of bed from sheer pain. This time it seemed worse than ever.

He was 'dosed up' with tea with glucose and buttered toast. Meanwhile emails were coming back from all over with assurances of prayer.

Husband managed to get some sleep, and managed to keep some food down. I also snatched a few minutes of sleep while son played by himself. Then, miraculously, by about 4pm, husband was able to get out of bed.

Through it all, son was good as gold and did not present any problems -- thank God! I managed to keep going, somehow.

We had a quiet Christmas, just the three of us with a friend who lives on his own and within walking distance. Husband barely had enough energy to keep him going, but put on a brave face and soldiered on.

It was not until July this year that the consultants finally sorted out a 'concoction of chemicals' to help his body cope, and I am pleased and thankful to say that as of August he has been officially "in remission".

So we are looking forward to Christmas this year with special gratitude. I shall have my niece and nephew visiting from different continents. And I shall remember for a long time that sleepless night when my world threatened to fall apart.

Thank you, Lord!

No comments: