This week the roller coaster of January days continued.
This morning, I am struggling through bleary eyes to make my words make sense, as The Dude breathes loudly behind me and watches Handy Manny.
Aquaman spent what I am sure was a magical night riding unicorns around his grandparent's house last night, and is now on his way to church with them. I talked to him a few moments ago, and asked how he was. His only answer, the typical: "DODO!" and then he was off again to play.
JT is currently in the ocean swimming with the recurrent seasonal lifeguards, whose tryouts were this weekend. It is probably the coldest morning of the year.
He didn't get to bed until after midnight, as that is when we were finally released from the ER with The Dude. His first ER visit, and hopefully the last for our family for a long time. But rather than being a nightmarish night there, all I felt was intense relief. After 4 nights of raging fever and loud rapid breathing, I was so glad to place the medical responsibility for my son into someone else's hands.
I had been alternating tylenol and motrin around the clock for 4 days, but I skipped the tylenol dose last night so they would believe how really sick he was. When we arrived at the ER, his temperature was 105.4. They got us back quickly. I've never seen him so pale. Just before his fever shot up again at home, I urged him to take a drink of his gatorade or water, as he hardly had anything to drink all day yesterday. When I did, he looked up at me with his sick, sad eyes and said: "I'm still pretty sick, Mama."
JT came home from a quick meeting with a friend after work and found me crying on the couch, holding our lethargic child and waiting for the on call doctor to call me back. Before I knew it, Grandma was there to pick up Aquaman and JT had both The Dude and me in the car and on our way.
Between both boys' ear infections, Aquaman's viral hives, and The Dude's recent illness, I haven't slept in almost 2 weeks. I am almost 26 weeks pregnant. Sometimes I feel like I'm dying myself. And then the energy of holding my little boys comes back. Then my husband hugs me, or makes a split decision, or brings me a smoothie, and I remember that everything is going to be ok.
It took 3 sticks, with The Dude bundled in a blanket and screaming before they got the IV. Our littlest son kicked wildly and vigorously inside of me while The Dude screamed. He was either afraid he was next, or he was jumping to his big brother's defense.
It took 2 boluses of fluid before The Dude finally peed. And they were about to let us go, with the diagnosis of viral illness when the medical director reviewed the xray and found left lower lobe pneumonia.
I had no idea you could get pneumonia and never cough. Now I know. And it is so nice to have an answer.
He was cooled down more than he's been in days when we left the hospital, pumped full of icy IV fluids and medications. He continued to snore and gasp all night, and 2 hours after getting home was burning with fever again.
There was something so hope-filled about the light coming through the windows this morning.
"Weeping may endure for a night, but joy comes in the morning."
And this morning there is so much joy. That God has chosen to spare my son. Whose name means: "praise." The Bible character with his name's mother said, the day he was born: "This time I will praise the Lord."
And this morning I am praising the Lord. For his mercy and provision. For loving and caring for my son more than I ever could.
My reading through Genesis this week has taken me back through the story of Joseph. How he knew from a young teenager that he had been called to something big. But God couldn't make him who he was supposed to be by leaving him where he was. He needed to take him out of the home where he was pampered and praised and spoiled and bring him somewhere where he would be tested and disrespected and treated unfairly. God didn't just need to move Joseph to a different location to save his family. He needed to move him to a different environment to shape his heart into a man who could truly serve him.
Joseph responded with humility. He did not harden his heart from the pain or injustice. He let it humble and break him. And then God used him.
It changes the way I look at every circumstance. It helps me not to fight the process. He's taking us somewhere amazing this January.
Through the illnesses, the weariness and mentally overwhelming prospect of another baby, and the cold cold swims in the ocean after long late nights.
I can't wait to see what He has in store.