Lenten Experience

Jesus calls us to journey through the desert with him during Lent.  
Now, I'm a faithful, actively participating Catholic and have always been up to the challenge to dig deep spiritually during the holy season.  I eagerly resolve to be the penitent and evaluate my spiritual life during the forty days of Lent - with Him I willingly fast and pray.  However, usually so eager, God called me deeper this year, I'm suddenly a reluctant pilgrim.  Jesus is graciously the heavy this time as I'm dumbstruck on my path.



Our beautiful, newly crowned family teenager became ridiculously skinny during this past Basketball season.  I urged him to eat.  I cooked his favorite meals.  I compromised with his eating habits.  He retaliated by barely picking up the fork and sinking his head at the table, knowing yet again he was going to disappoint us by not eating much.

He's a tall kid and a picky eater, he's just going through a lengthening, making him appear skinnier

Jacob has always had a special order he must do his routines in, and if he is rushed, some don't get done.  This included brushing his teeth. A couple of weeks ago, he came into the laundry room when I was folding a load.  It's tight quarters and as he said something to me, I could smell that he was sick.  "Jacob, is your throat sore?"  "No"  "Are you sure?"  "yes"  "ok, well, I want you to go gargle anyways"  

Need to remember to talk to Bob and have him check out his throat.
Mentioning one night at dinner that he's "lucky" because he has "enough time to stop and get a drink and go to the bathroom between each class",  Bob and I catch eyes across the table and smile at our quirky young guy who says the most oddball things.  

We are the lucky ones with this beautiful child.

Last weekend the family (boys included!) were doing chores.  Over comes Jacob who hasn't participated at all.  Taking a deep breath, I prayed to give him some slack since I knew he hadn't been feeling well.  When I actually looked at his face, he was angry, irritable and extremely overtired.  I asked him why he was fighting with his brother and not being helpful he practically screamed at me
 "I Don't Know!"
 "What do you mean 'you don't know?? Look at your face in the mirror! Does this look like the face of someone who is ok?!?"  
"No.  I don't know"
"Ok.  Head over to your room and take a nap, I think you just need a good rest"
He stayed the rest of the day.

I need to remember to call the Dr. on Monday - he must have an infection.

Monday came and went as we didn't have any school and I went to work, forgetting to call the Dr. until I came home and saw how much worse Jacob looked.  As I described his symptoms, the nurse asked me if I wanted to take him to Urgent Care (huh?  it's just a virus, right?) or take the 8:30 AM Tuesday appointment.  "uh, I guess I'll take the 8:30 one" and go grocery shopping right after, I guess.  Monday night, my sweet hubby had set up a surprise for me ~ he whisked me away to GR for a dinner out!  The first real surprise dinner in our entire 16 years.  When we got home, the guidance counselor (really our sitter-who's-not-a-sitter 'cause our kids are older and don't-need-a-sitter! but really do if we want to have a standing house and return to all 5 boys in relatively the same shape we left them in) asked if we were taking Jacob to the Dr. soon.  "Yes, we have an appt. in the morning."  "Good cause he didn't eat and he doesn't look good.  At all."

Mom concern is becoming full blown Mom-worry.  Note to self:  make sure Dr. doesn't dismiss this.  Something is really wrong.

Tuesday comes and Jacob is riding with me to the Dr..  He's not talking much and just seems to be along for the ride. He's also emanating that sick smell we've been getting used to and I can tell it's getting worse.  Getting through the appointment and labs is making Jacob quite nervous, but we manage.  On our way back to school as Dr. waits for the labs.

I hope his labs come back sooner rather than later, something is deeply wrong.  Bob's going to think I'm crazy, but I've got a bad feeling about this.

Sooner is right.  I was home for no less than 5 minutes and the phone rings.  It's the Dr.  "Are you home? is someone with you?"  "Yyeeeessss....."  "Well Mom, unfortunately your instincts were right.  Your Jacob has Diabetes."  The next few minutes were followed by numbers, explanations of tests and levels and words like "symptoms.....blood sugars.......keytones.....smell......high........thirsty......shock.......Type I............need to get to DeVos......endocrinologist......quickly as you can.........pack your bags just in case .....manageable.....good......."  We left and grabbed Jacob back out of school who was wondering what in the world was going on.  We did our best to explain things and got there 'as quickly' as we could.  This time I did not even make one small peep to Bob about speeding.

Please God put our baby in the best care possible.  Thank you Lord for helping us.  
Kris!  All the signs were there!  Why weren't you paying attention!! What in the world did you take him back to school for??!! 

The rest of the story is being written.  Many tears have and will continue to be shed.  I know we didn't cause it, but we still feel guilty anyway (?)  Our baby must be on a regimen of insulin for the remainder of his days.  Type I Diabetes is NOT nor treated the same as Type II Diabetes.   I'm dreaming about carb counting.  Helen DeVos Children's Hospital and  the staff with Dr. Pinar are a dream team for parents like us. 



Journeying in the desert is miserable if you are doing it alone.  Praise the Lord that Jesus went before to show me the way - to show me how to rely on the Father and be my companion.  Thank God that Jacob did not go into a coma.  Celebrate that Bob and I were home.  Joyously celebrate our Sacramental Covenant which allows us to be a team and unifying our bond to each other for better or worse, emphasis on the "worse".  I couldn't do this without any of the important men in my life - most especially Jesus.  We may be in the desert together, but my guide knows the one way out. 


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