There are days when I forget that Davy is sick.
Days were everything seems normal…haha…maybe normal isn’t the right word there…well at least somewhat normal. At this point, the constant hum and cadence of the oxygen machine, the militant rigidity of administering drugs, and the regular pattern of feeding – calculate milk, fill bottles with said milk, clean out bag from previous milk residue, fill bag with new milk, adjust feeding machine, wash bottles, repeat – has all become second nature at this point. This is our “new normal”.
The really awesome part of it all is as Davy has gotten bigger (seriously…she’s a beast!) and healthier, we’ve started to see more of her personality be unearthed from the drug induced fog she’s been in since the day she was born. Y’all – can I brag for a second? Ok…I’m just going to do it. My daughter is the stinking sweetest girl! In the morning she possess the most docile and joyful disposition. She will just grin at you, play with you and suck you into the vortex of her beautiful silver dollar, deep blue eyes. During the day she has a feistiness and spunk that energizes the room (and wears me the heck out!).
(Her shirt says – #cutie – I think it’s fitting!)
Now, don’t get me wrong, she can still be a little terror every once in awhile and screams bloody murder every time we try to give her a bath. Seriously, EVERY TIME we try to give her a bath – you would think I had just slapped a baby kitten. So at this point, Chels and I have reserved ourselves to giving Davy baths less frequently and then military style when we do them!
All in all though, she’s sweet, energetic, fun, attentive and fully engaged with her surroundings.
The hard part though, is that this rhythm has a way of lulling you to sleep like the droning of tires on the highway during a long road trip. A few days, or weeks, where things are looking up has a way of inducing amnesia to the fact that my daughter is still in a fight to get better. Days like that are days I forget she is sick.
However, there are also days when the fact that she is sick is thrust into my face with the torrential force of a coastal gale.
We had a day like that a few weeks ago. Davy woke up that morning and just wasn’t herself. Then she began to throw up, which is relatively normal for her to do 2-5 times a day at this point, but that day it happened 10-15 times. Davy eventually threw up her NG tube and we were unable to replace it. As the day progressed things got worse and worse. So bad that we were told that we should go to the emergency room because Davy potentially had gotten sick.
I was supposed to preach to a group of students that night and I called my boss for him to fill in for me. In our conversation, I asked him a question, that steam rolled my emotions, “How do you stay strong?” – I wanted to know how to be strong for my wife, my daughter and my family.
As I asked it I just started to weep. It was the first time I’ve cried since we’ve been home. I realized that I was tired, emotionally exhausted and didn’t have the strength anymore to keep it all together.
He paused momentarily and then responded, “You don’t”. He reminded me that my greatest responsibility was to not be the strong one, but to point people to the one who was , is, and always will be – Jesus. As he encouraged me, Isaiah 40:28 came to mind, “Have you not known? Have you not heard? The Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He does not faint or grow weary; his understanding is unsearchable.” He doesn’t grow faint or weary – his strength never runs out of supply.
That night we ended up getting everything resolved due in large part to our amazing home health nurse Sandy who came over to help us get things under control. It took about 24 hours but everything eventually settled down and we got our little girl back on track.
Late that night God eased my anxious heart from fearing future days ahead were we might not be as lucky as we were that day. He pressed upon me that there will always be brokenness, hurt, pain, suffering and trials on this side of eternity, but that he would be even more consistent than those things.
I also realized that Davy isn’t the only sick one.
We’re all sick and broken due to the negative results of sin ravaging the world around us. There are days of prosperity, ease or apathy where we forget that the world is at best, a fraction of its former glory (Gen. 1-2). It’s those days that we are lulled to sleep to the surrounding realities.
Yet, there are also days that we remember we are sick. Days where we hear about or experience relational fall out, an argument with a spouse, a cancer diagnosis, financial troubles, failing bodies, tsunamis, war, famine, poverty or brothers and sisters on the other side of the world getting martyred for their faith. These are days where we remember that our world is sick and in need of a physician (Mark 2:17).
The great hope for us though is that we do have a physician who came and entered into the sick, broken and fractured reality that we call our existence, so that there might be steps towards healing and restoration both on this side of eternity and the next. This truth frees us as a community to not have to point each other to our own finite strength, but the infinite strength of the Creator of the ends of the earth whose strength never runs dry.
There will be days that you remember you are sick and the world around you is in disarray, but we must never forget that our God is strong and is the Great Physician who brings both eternal healing to our souls and will restore the earth to a perfect glory one day (Rev. 21).
So, let us keep our eyes on the founder and perfecter of our faith for in him we will find strength, endurance and healing, especially on days we remember we’re sick.
- Davy’s Stomach – Continue to pray that Davy’s stomach would continue to heal and work properly. We would love for Davy to stop throwing up so frequently and to eventually not need the feeding tube anymore.
- Davy’s Lungs – Davy continues to be on oxygen support and probably will be for awhile. Our doctors also believe that Davy has developed asthma, so we are giving her an inhaler twice a day to help. Pray that her lungs would continue to grow and get stronger.
- Eczema – Our poor little girl has developed eczema and it’s driving her nuts. We’re going to see a dermatologist this week, but would love your prayers for wisdom to know what steps to take next.
- Physical Therapy – Davy has started PT and is doing so well. We’ve bumped up PT to twice a week because we think she can handle it. Please be praying that Davy would grow stronger and stronger every day!