Soooooo it’s been a loooooong five days. I woke up last Friday with a very distinct prelude to a cold. That hollowed out feeling in your stomach; a slight fever and that “THING” in your sinuses that makes you sound as if you’re talking from the bottom of a well. I did my usual, loaded up on Zycam and Tylenol, and bundled up. Figured it might last a day and then things would be back to normal….other than that though, I wasn’t really too bummed because I knew it meant I would actually get some rest over the weekend.
**sigh** Friday came and went, Saturday came and went, Sunday came and went….STILL felt like a lump of germs….Monday came and went, Tuesday came…..still no relief. I slept until about noon when the dog woke me up. I went to take some Dayquil and had to stop myself. I hadn’t eaten and through trial and error Dayquil and I have come to an agreement. I will never again take it on an empty stomach and it will never again make me lose my cookies in an unflattering way. So upon recollection of this agreement I knew I had to eat something.
I shuffled my way to the kitchen trying not to trip over the fluff boy along the way because he was so joyously jumping up and down that I had finally felt good enough to get out of bed and play with him. All the while I’m feeling like a slug.
So I arrive in the kitchen and open the refrigerator only to realize there is no food that doesn’t require cooking….and last time I checked condiments, though readily available, still don’t make a meal. **SIGH**….not even bread for toast...I really must go grocery shopping. Hmmm…no energy to cook and no appetite to eat anything having to be cooked. Time for plan B, I decide to go look and see what canned goods I have. Maybe a nice soup…. So I trudge downstairs to the where the pantry is and proceed to open the cupboards. Hmmm…the only soup is cream of chicken, cream of celery and cream of mushroom. Not an appetizing choice at the moment. Cranberry sauce….ehhh…no…. Tons of tomato sauce and canned tomatoes for Mr. B’s chilies and salsas….and every hot sauce imaginable to man…..I really do need to write an entry one of these days about the Bear and his pepper fetish. Anyway, just then I hit the no cooking required mother load. Let’s see a whole little section of possibilities….albacore tuna, wax beans, beans and franks, and turkey Spam. After much deliberation,…I settled on the beans and franks. Not at all a favorite, but considering I couldn’t taste anything ANYWAY it seemed the least offensive.
A short time later as Sargie and I sat curled up in bed, me eating my lunch feeling crummy and him gnawing on his bone I had another one of “THOSE” moments. What good is coming out of this….5 days of feeling crummy….where is that, “oh, well that makes it all worth while” moment….it had to be there somewhere and I just hadn’t seen it yet. Yes, if you haven’t figured it out by now I REALLY DO believe this about EVERYTHING and REALLY DO attempt to always practice what I preach. So I asked God, “Where is it? What was the reason behind me being here this long….I don’t feel like I’ve accomplished much or had much impact on anyone or anything. I mean, I trust that you have a reason….I just sure as heck don’t see it…..”
So I finished lunch and decided to turn on the computer and catch up on emails and Facebook and consider my next blog entry as I pondered my question. Just then, the phone rang. I considered not answering it…I felt crummy and the thought of talking to somebody was a bit daunting. I decided to check the caller ID though and see who it was. Lori…hmmm…it was after her lunchtime and she knew I was home sick, so she was probably checking in to see how I was feeling. I picked it up.
What met me next was a sound you hate to hear in general and it’s even worse from the other end of a phone…especially when it’s coming from somebody you care about. Sobs, hysterical and frantic sobs. I immediately jumped up and tried to get her to tell me what was wrong. Amid the sounds of crying, her car keys and door alert in the background and the car engine starting I heard the word “mom” and I instantly remembered her mom had gone to a Dr appointment that morning… My heart sank, Oh Lord, no….not her mom…not now….. Over the next few moments she explained to me as best she could, what was going on….and the outlook was bad…VERY bad. Instantly I began to pray out loud…..to pray for peace, to pray for wisdom, to pray for protection as she tried to drive on one of the busiest highways from her job, 6 towns away all the way to the hospital where her mother was in the ER. Anything that crossed my mind as being important to pray for at that moment I threw in there like a machine gun set on rapid fire.
In an instant, I told her if she wanted me to go with her, I would, and she did. I swear I have never gotten showered and dressed, walked the dog and fixed my hair with time to spare, so quickly in my life. I sent out a quick blurb to some friends who know her and called Ben to let him know what was up and I waited.
In the hours that followed, there was a lot of waiting and hugging and waiting and crying. At one point as we waited for her to be given a room of her own and transported from the ER, I sat in the waiting room thinking and people watching. Then I realized something…..if I hadn’t been sick for the past five days I would have been at work when this happened. If I had been at work I wouldn’t have been able to pray with Lori at that moment, I wouldn’t have been able to jump up and go with her to the hospital at a moments notice and I wouldn’t have been able to stay with them as they waited. So I had my answer….my “Oh, well that makes it all worth while” moment. Was five days of bed-ridden crummy-ness worth it to be able to be there for a friend when she needed it? Absolutely….and I would go through it all again and worse if need be.
Lori and I talked a lot last night…. In person for hours and over IM for a while too. In the end we BOTH concluded that now more than ever, regardless of what happens in life, good and bad….it ALL has a purpose and good will ALWAYS come of it…no matter what. It sounds corny, and the ultimate in Pollyanna thinking, but it’s sure a heck of a lot better than the alternative. I would far rather go through life looking for the good in all the sad, painful, and frustrating things that come my way than to turn bitter and miserable every time things don’t turn out the way I had hoped.
This morning as I was catching up on reading my devotions I was intrigued by yesterday’s entry. The entire thing was very good, but one of my favorite scriptures was highlighted and it was just soooooo fitting.
“Proverbs 31:25 reminds us, "she can laugh at the days to come."
She [The Proverbs 31 woman] was filled with such incredible joy not because life was perfect but simply because she had decided to make laughter, peace, and truth the hallmarks of her life. Proverbs 31:30 goes on to say this was a woman to be praised because she so reverenced God in the shrine of her heart. She knew without a doubt, He was - and still is - enough.”
Now Lori and her family have a long road ahead of them, and it won’t be easy… and it won’t be tearless….but ultimately, good will come of it…every single moment of it. Things in my life won’t always go the way I hoped and sometimes they will just plain suck and look hopeless, BUT good WILL come of every moment of it. Why? Simple…..because God is and always will be….ENOUGH.