Wednesday, August 21, 2013

It's been a flurry of activity on the medical front.

I've been with Penny for over 22 years, and during that time, I have spent many moments at her side regarding tests, surgeries, and treatment (and also my children, especially my daughter). During that time period, I have been the one who hasn't seen the doctor much, let alone having only 1 surgical procedure in the past 22 years (so it is weird being the person that is getting all of the tests done on them over multiple days).

I really don't know how to feel about such things when I am the person being treated/tested, as usually when I've been there supporting others.... it has usually followed with strife and difficulty so when possible, so I usually avoid them given what I went through as a child. I couldn't really put myself in their shoes knowing what they were going through as I didn't have an adult perspective of such things.

I'll explain.

When I was 5 years old, I had walking pneumonia (and I spent 2 weeks in the hospital during which I spent time with very old people who were very ill.... people who were groaning or snoring all of the time). I was surrounded by a plastic tent (meant to keep me in an oxygenated environment I believe) and was getting many injections with very large needles. During that time, I also celebrated my 6th birthday. Needless to say, the experience was both positive (I loved the doctors and nurses) and negative (I was surrounded by illness) and as a very young impressionable boy, it has played a long term role in my life in my trying to avoid hospitals, doctors, and dentists. it also cemented my strong relationship with my mother (who was there for me despite having a job to go to during that time). I learned how to tell time, learned flirting skills regarding the nursing staff, learned how to use a wheelchair, and became enamored with every '60's sitcom that was being rerun at that time (especially Bewitched and I love Lucy)..... but I digress.

So, to see my wife Penny being there with me and for me (and being strong for me)... especially when she is in the fight of her life against bladder cancer.... is so very humbling to me. The last person in "my corner" was my mother (it didn't matter how much I screwed up or was hurt, she always was there). She was as pure a liberal as they come (from a family of liberals) and she wondered sometimes who raised me given my conservative leanings... but that never stopped her from supporting me through thick and thin (a true hero in my life). It has been almost 4 long years since my mother has passed and I miss her so much, so it is with incredulity that I find my wife being in my corner the same way (and am so very thankful to be blessed 3 times in my life with strong women... the primary influence during my childhood being my Grandmother - Helen Fletre and my mother and now my wife). Blessed am I.

So I have had many tests done (a total of 10 different blood tests so far), x-rays to determine the present condition of my feet and ankles (regarding their degenerative condition) and depending on the results of those, a possible spinal tap and MRI (to exclude Multiple Sclerosis.... yup, that is a possibility considering my symptoms). I am going into therapy tomorrow and meeting a former co-worker later in the day, so things are looking up and I am enjoying each day on my own personal journey of healing.

On another note, I came across a few pictures from back when I was in the Marine Corps, so if anyone is wondering why I have been enamored with logistics my entire life, this picture should explain why.


Sunday, August 18, 2013

A wonderful day at Church. =)

Penny and I were both feeling pretty verklempt this morning, but we have made it a point to help the other in trying to get to Church no matter how we feel. 

So, we went ahead and got to Church in between services. We saw Pastor Adam as soon as we walked in the door and since he had mentioned on FB that he wanted to sit down with us today, it was perfect timing.

We went over why we have decided to take up the offer from Deb and Walter Wolf to join Pingree Grove (FVC West) and we mentioned our wish to contribute to the Church's needs. I mentioned my technical background and that we would like to help regarding the Church's needs for help regarding Information Technology and beverage services at the new location. Our medical situations came up during the conversation and I mentioned that we are picking up a Handicap Van later today (that God had blessed us with the opportunity to pick up the van at minimal cost). Given it is a Ford E150 and has a V8, it can handle pulling/towing the 6,000 lb trailer that will need to be transported between FVC and the Pingree Grove Location. There are 2 parishioner vans being outfitted to haul the trailer (and this will be handled on a rotating schedule). There was a need for a 3rd van for this schedule, so we offered up our van for the 3rd spot.

Amazingly, my helping on the technical support, Penny helping with the coffee service, and also helping others pull the trailer as part of a schedule fulfilled a prayer Adam had right before we met this morning. Wow.

So it is not only a great thing that we can help while the Church is starting in a new location, but our getting the van to help me get from point A to point B fulfills a need that reaffirms our getting it in the first place.

I cannot begin to describe how wonderful FVC is regarding a place of worship where people REALLY do care. If you are looking for a place to go to for God's word, I wholeheartedly recommend this wonderful house of God.  =)
Edit (added later in the evening around 11:28 pm).
We picked up the van later this afternoon and here it is after a $3.00 car wash and adding 15" hubcaps that I had in the garage (and it drove very smoothly without incident). =)