Tuesday, July 23, 2013
Now, Let Me Tell You Something About My Mother-in-law!
On June 13, 2013, my dear Mother-in-Love (that's her from a fish-eye view - tee hee!) was whisked by ambulance to the local hospital’s emergency room. She was bleeding internally; she had virtually no color to her skin and she was frighteningly weak. The ER doctor, a childhood friend of mine, feared this sweet woman would die from the blood loss before they could replenish her supply.
Through it all, however, Mother-in-Love kept her positive outlook and never ceased to entertain the staff at our local hospital, or her many visitors. But, I could see the tiredness in her eyes. Although she obviously loved talking to anyone who walked in her door and devising schemes to play Cupid (i.e., via a singles mixer/Bible study at her church’s nature campus), she really needed rest. Rest from her illness and all the poking and sticking, and, most importantly, rest from her constant stream of thought. She’s been learning the hard way how to stop moving and be still, how to take care of herself. I can relate to this lesson as I, too, am still in the early stages of learning self-love and self-care.
My dear husband was with his parents when his momma was first taken to the ER; the kids and I were out of town for the day. That sweet man of mine held his dear momma’s hand throughout those first scary hours. And, oh how she LOVED having his firm, yet soft, hand holding hers. What a beautiful picture. That man loves his momma dearly and God granted him a wonderful opportunity to show that love with one small, simple, yet profound, act. And, really, does anything make a man sexier than seeing him loving on his momma? Be still my heart!
After ten days at the local hospital with no relief or real progress made, Mother-in-Love was transferred to the big city hospital in St. Louis. Via a pink ambulance, to her delight! They quickly determined she had developed a stromal tumor on her stomach lining that ulcerated , or burst, and also a cluster of bleeding ulcers. Overall, she was given 16+ units of blood in less than two weeks’ time at the two hospitals.
Mother-in-Love came through surgery (to remove the tumor (benign)) last week with flying colors. And her ulcers have healed. Yay, God! I look forward to hearing from her what the Holy Spirit has spoken and taught her these last few weeks.
Although I do not believe God caused Mother-in-Love’s illness, He has been working the circumstances for good. My heart has softened immeasurably toward her. He’s blessed me with a couple of wonderful conversations with her. The Lord has gifted me with glimpses into Mother-in-Love’s heart, into her fears. He’s gifted me with the opportunity to serve her and love her through simple acts - folding laundry, filing her fingernails, brushing her hair. For all of this, I am grateful.