Thank you doesn’t always seem like enough, but really, what else do we have?
In 1997 on December 5th, I was in the living room of my dad’s house (that’s where we lived) and Phyllis had been ill probably for 6 weeks with flu like symptoms, her medications had just been changed for what seemed t be the 100th time, we had been to the doctor so many times, I felt like I lived there. A respitory infection was her diagnosis, as a mom I knew that wasn’t right, however, as a mom who didn’t think I knew what I was doing, I never spoke up (I learned that lesson quick following that). Phyllis wouldn’t lean on her left hand while coloring and her knee was swollen. To the emergency room. I didn’t think it was an allergic reaction to the meds because I thought it would have affected both wrists or both knees, but I was taking no chances. After many tests, and scared out of my mind – trying to remain calm because they said if they couldn’t figure out what was wrong… they would do a spinal tap – that still makes me nervous, just typing it.
The diagnosis after a night in the hospital. Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis. That was one of those “what the heck?” moments to say the least. I didn’t know what it was, but I was bound and determined to figure it out. And from that day forward it got a lot worse, both wrists, both knees, both ankles, elbow, hip. It meant that my baby would some days require more than one a day warm baths, shots (did God forget who her mom was? I am no nurse), belly aches, wheel chair bound, many doctors appointments. Worrying about losing my job (not that ANY of my bosses ever made me feel that way – that was all me). I was threatened with having child services called on me because I mistakenly missed a doctor’s appointment and had cancelled one. My daughter was put through the wringer, physically and emotionally, and as her mom, with the exception of joint pain, so was I. One any given day, at any given moment, I would have gladly taken it all, no matter how hard it would have been. Gladly.
And I can’t tell you the exact day, but I can tell you the exact moment when I said “I can’t fight anymore God, it’s all You”. It was when I faxed over the application for the payment of her Enbrel. At $1200 a box, two boxes required a month, I said “I don’t know what to do, I can’t research it, it’s too new, God if she’s supposed to be on it, it will be approved, if it’s not, then God, that’s Your will, and I won’t fit it.” Approvals sometimes take a long time, this approval was given in less than 15 minutes. OK God, thank You. They said it would take anywhere from 6-10 weeks before we might see a difference, our (God’s timing) – 2 weeks. A nutritional supplement added, Biotics IAG.
Remission soon following.
This year was the year that I received the official “all clear” letter. Appointments made and the news delievered in person, however, the transcript to the primary physian, in my mind, was the official document, as if God said to me “it is finished”.
I attended a dinner this year for the Michigan Chapter of the Arthritis Foundation. I don’t think that was a mistake, that this year, I could have been a keynote speaker on the good that they do.
I know the power of prayer, I saw it, first hand, when I would send out a prayer request for my hurting human weather vane (I knew the weather better than any meteorologist because it affected her joints), she would immediately be better. I saw it and felt it.
I can’t say thank you enough to the doctors, nurses, social workers (even the one who threatened to call social services on me), for my friends who supported me, for my bosses who let me take off work, and let me come in late, for the Principal of her school, for the school secretary, for her teachers, for my dad, and my family and their endless support, for the physical therapy, for the health insurance, for the crippled children’s fund, for the arthritis foundation, for my job, for the prayer warriors, but mostly for Jesus, may I never forget where He delivered us from.
Happy Anniversay tomorrow Pean! You’ll never know the joy I have in you!