Saturday, December 1, 2012

The Gift

From the outside looking in, I would imagine that the events of this past week for my family would look overwhelming: my uncle passed away and my husband had emergency surgery.  All at the same time.  Same day.  If I think about it like that, I even wonder how I am still standing.  Indeed, it felt completely overwhelming at first.  How could this all happen at the same time?  Two big things?  You aren't supposed to have TWO big things at the same time, are you?

I think back to being a freshman in college taking a psychology class and learning about the Holmes and Rahe Stress scale.  My levels are well over 300 and it happened fast.

The last five months have been almost unbearably difficult with my uncle's illness, working through denial and anger, praying, crying, accepting.  My uncle is such an important part of my life.  He was someone I could always call, someone I always admired, someone who was ALWAYS there for me.  This is the biggest loss I have ever experienced.  The part he played in my life is too big to lose.  Bruce, ever the poet, ever the voice of my heart, said it best, "Something big was missing" (Terry) and "Some people are too big to die"(Clarence).

"You can't always get what you want...But if you try sometimes, you just might get what you need..."  ~ The Rolling Stones

When I heard about my uncle, initially I fell apart in that surgical waiting room, all by myself on a quiet hospital floor.  But then I had to rally.  I had to go see my husband when he came out of surgery.  I had to get our house ready for him to come home.  I had to be there for my girls and help them process everything.  I had to bring my husband home from the hospital.

Jason will be out of work for six weeks, and while that is going to be a financial struggle, maybe it is just what our family needs emotionally now.  Jason is here to pick up the pieces when I fall apart.  Jason is here to help make sure we all eat.  A week after surgery, he is now able to drive and help with errands.  He still can't lift anything over 20 pounds, but he can help with homeschooling and cooking and keeping the house tidy.  He can't carry the laundry baskets or get the Christmas ornaments out, but he can fold clothes and bake cookies.  He is also there just to hold me when I cry.  He is there to remind me that my uncle is with us right now.  He is there to tell me that my uncle wants us to enjoy our life and not to miss him so much that we can't.  He is there to reassure me that my uncle wants us to enjoy Christmas this year and to make a nice Christmas for the girls.  He is here to comfort me and be my rock.  And that, my friends, is a gift from God.