Saturday, April 30, 2011

What Exactly Does Broken Look Like?????

Last week I talked about how God gave me permission to "break". And ever since then, I have been on this journey of becoming completely and utterly....BROKEN.

We had the 2nd opinion at the surgeon on Thursday. It was absolutely not at all what we were expecting to hear. Amputation of the foot....YES! we were ready for, but taking the leg to just below the knee...NOPE!! We spent the ride home in silence as we were both trying to digest what we heard. We have the appointment for opinion number 3 on Tuesday, however, when we look at the facts, it is a matter of "when" not "if".

BROKEN? What does that mean exactly? I wish I could say for sure because I'm not convinced I'm done "breaking" yet. I keep holding on to this mentality that "I" can do something about life. Reality being what it is....I HAVE ABSOLUTELY NO CONTROL WHATSOEVER!!!

BROKEN? I think being broken is a journey. A journey that is as individual as each of our DNA. The only constant fact is that once we are completely broken, our GREAT GOD will come and put us back together again, just like Humpty Dumpty.

BROKEN? Right at this moment, for me, is raw truth. If I am asked, "Are you doing ok?"; "Are you hanging in there?". My answer will now be the raw truth of "NO! I am not ok, but I am seeking God through this horrible storm." "NO! but I am certain of one thing and that is that HE will NEVER leave me nor FORSAKE me." "NO! I would very much like to get off this roller coaster ride now, but NEVERTHELESS....not my will, but THINE be done."

God doesn't ask us to put a bow on the bad and "pretend" that we are A-OK. HIS miracles are better seen through the raw ugliness of the truth!

I thank you, God, for this storm. I thank you, God, for the miracle. And I now stand down and stop trying to control this whole situation for I have no control anyway. I have faith that just as always, with every other storm, YOU have showed yourself in such a mighty way and I will sit and wait upon YOUR glory as I continue to break!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

It's OK to Break

It certainly has been awhile since I have written. I guess you could say that I was running. My fear is what has caused me to not write. Fear of actually putting into words the things that we have been dealing with. If I write it down, it makes it all to REAL.

And REAL it is..."it" being life. We all have our portions and this plate has had quite a lot of servings of brussel sprouts (or lima know who you Just pick the food you dislike the most. Ours over the last few months has been quite crazy. So I will do the best to fill you all in and show you how wonderful God is through it all............

Last August, when we took Crystal to school in Arkansas, we received a phone call from Pittsburgh Hospital Transplant unit stating that we needed to get Rob into the unit the next day for a biopsy on the kidney because his labs came back and they were concerned that he would be rejecting his kidney. WHOA!!!! We were 1000 miles away and had an 18 hour drive to just get back to PA. They just said to get there as fast as we could. Talk about a long ride home.

So they do the biopsy and they start the drugs to stop rejection only to find 3 days later that it is NOT rejection, but instead is the BK virus that occurs in kidney transplant patients. OK, NOW WHAT???? Now we start on a new drug that is a 4 hour IV infusion once a week in Pittsburgh with weekly labs until the levels of this virus are no longer in the blood and register only at 80,000 or less in the urine. Most of the patients take 6 weeks of treatment and then they are good to go. Well...we are 6 months later and Rob is still having to go once per week for treatment. It's a one step forward 3 steps back process. But as always, we are plugging away and continuing on the path we need to go.

Then in December, Rob had an argument with the kerosene heater in the garage and, well, the heater won. Rob gave it a swift kick to hopefully start it up (which it did) then 9 hours later, I went to the garage to check on him and there was blood coming from his shoe. The heater he kicked caused a wound and open dislocation of his toe on the foot that already had the amputated big toe. So off we went to the ER. Three days and one surgery later Rob came home on IV antibiotics. He's bound and determined for me to get my RN degree in life :).

His toe healed entirely and yet he was still going to Pittsburgh as well as the wound clinic for an open wound on the bottom of his foot (see a previous post for how long we've been doing this).

We had a really rough holiday season and then I started to struggle at work, as so many of us do. This first quarter has been the most rough quarter at work that I have ever experienced, yet, I know that God has BIG plans for us to be going through all of this "STUFF". Through all of this, as well, our marriage seemed to start to crumble before our eyes. Every marriage out there has had their share of's just that ours has had some "unique" circumstances.
What's even more crazy is that our marriage seems to do quite well in the chaos of the health stuff, but you toss "normal life" in there and we just look at each other and have no clue how to act.

I am now at a place through all of this that leads me to the point that God made to me today.

I was working so hard the last few months to "fix" things on my own. Fix Rob's BK virus in the kidney; FIX Rob's stubborn temper that caused him to kick the heater in the garage which caused the open toe wound; FIX our marriage, which of course in my eyes meant "FIX" Rob; FIX my job and the horrible months I was having.

BUT GOD......has bigger plans......which I am EVER so THANKFUL for..... Tuesday of this week....we started to see what our options are for Rob with his condition called Charcot Foot that is causing the ulcer on his foot to not heal. Now we are starting to explore the options of possible proactive amputation. POSSIBLE. We are just exploring the options at this point. But again God allows things to happen for His greater glory.

Today, as I was driving to my meeting, the sunshine was bursting through the clouds and a beautiful stream of light was flowing from the sky. I just started to cry and literally asking God "How much more before I break?" This is where I am so very thankful that my God knows how to answer me in a way that I understand Him. He said to me "Janine, you need to let yourself break and stop putting on this strength of self. For when you allow yourself to be broken into pieces it is then that I can put you back together to make a better Janine!" WOW!!!! Thank you, Lord for giving me the permission to break! All this "stuff" that can look so scary is meant to help me to BREAK so that my precious GOD can put me together again and be a better woman in HIS name.

So, now it is written and it is REAL and it is NOT scary for my God knows exactly how this will end and it is PERFECT!!! I am greatful to be BROKEN........