Friday, October 3, 2008

Don't EVER say the words "It can't get any worse"

In fact, don't even mutter those words, quietly under your breathe. Don't even... regardless of what state of feverish delirium you are in, or how many countless things have gone wrong to add up to your present despair... even think those words. Go ahead and feel the pain. But... don't say those words. Because..... things can always get worse. And there seems to be some scientific law that as soon as you do, they will. While lying feverish on the couch Wednesday night after three days of sudden Jane Austen levels of fever... chills, shakes, projectiles, aches, a three day migraine, a week of missed school, 527 unanswered phone calls and trying to block out the deafening sound of seven kids eating and cleaning up dinner in the kitchen, I came to the realization that it sounded like a food fight was now actually breaking out in my kitchen. And then I did it. I made the stuuuupid maverick mother mistake of forming those very words in my mind. Yes. "Could this beeeeee any worrr?!!?!....


Of course....only moments later came the most horrific sounds I think I have yet to hear in my lifetime. There was the horrible thud, Silas screaming bloody murder, everybody else screaming bloody mass murder, and the three oldest (normally calm-headed kids) running in to me in utter terror shrieking out the words "He's gouged his eye out!!!! Mom! His eyeball is gouged out!!! They were absolutely terror stricken which shook me up more than the scene itself... The "scene" happened to be Silas staggering around the kitchen with one very bloody eye, blood on his hands and screaming "I'm bliiiinded!" His vision was filled with blood so it was truly a scare for him. He had run into the cutting board that I knewww would eventually get left out and one day cause some real damage to some poor fool running by at high speeds.

(As Silas points out below)

I love this face. He looks like he's about to beat the crap out of the cutting board. Much in the same way we hear of mothers fighting off bears, running through burning buildings, to save their young, they can likewise overcome fever and projectiles, managing to run at very high speeds, even hurdling large pieces of furniture to tend to their injured young. It is a strong instinct for sure, and no doubt fueled by some pretty sweet adrenalin. Not even getting hung up by my bathrobe during my flight to the child (and the split second humiliating decision to shed it), was going to keep me from my young one. (I should mention here that I've been reading a lot of dramatic fiction during my days of invalidity)...

Isn't it amazing how quickly things can come into perspective for us? It's so ironic how for me things can seem so out of control until something really obviously out of my control happens and then I suddenly feel and remember how much out of my control it all is? Where nothing else matters. Where we realize nothing was really that bad a moment before when we were moaning that nothing could be worse?

I tend to do much better in those horrific-completely out of my control split second moments than I do in the sometimes overwhelming day to day little things that can feel we should have under "control". It takes a loud thud to jolt me out of my despair sometimes with what I know deep down. While scooping him up, grabbing a towel for the bleeding and hurrying him over to the light where I could assess the situation, I heard myself telling all of the panickers to "Calm down! Is God not in control? Did He not know this would happen? Does He not love Silas more than even we do and is He not the one who formed his little eyeball in the first place? Yes! He is! He did! He was and He still is in control!!! Everyone CHILL!"

This was met with silence, and true calmness that filled the room. We all (even the babies) gathered around him, laid hands on him and prayed. We cleaned him up and discovered that the cut (that has mostly healed before taking this picture), ran all the way up to the very tip of his lower eyelid, and even cut slightly inside of the lower lid (though not through). He also banged up the top lid pretty good which had been quite swollen before I took the picture today. I didn't see enough guts to call for stitches and by the time Brian got home it was old news (and I had my bathrobe back in place). eh hem.But I was so thankful for my fever and my back ache and my filthy house, unproductive week and my little boy at home with me instead of some ER somewhere. It is amazing how God needs to make things worse for us to see how good they really are, isn't it? We have so much. So, so much. Even when things go truly bad and we experience true tragedy or heartache, it can always be worse.

Oh Lord give us the grace to realize how much we have, how we deserve nothing good, and how you yourself took the horror of what we all really deserve. Help us to stay humbly on our feverish knees thanking you for each undeserved blessing. And when the thuds come, may we trust you because we know...we really know You and how much You love us.


christa jean said...

Ugh, I'm sorry you've been sooo ill! It is amazing how things fall so quickly to pieces when Momma's out of commission.

What a great lesson you have shared from poor Silas' situation. It always seems to be in the crazy, out-of-control times that we realize we can only stand on the Rock. I wish I could say that my first reaction would be, "It is well with my soul".

I love the statement of faith that you spoke out loud. That was a response that your kids will always remember.

Anonymous said...

Hi there!
Sorry I have not talked to you in so long and you have been SICK! Poor thing!
I can totally relate to handling the crisis better than the everyday things! I thought I was the only one who felt like that! Glad to hear Silas is healing up.

Anne Marie said...

I am thoroughly impressed with your statement to the children after Silas' accident! I hope and pray that I would respond similarly, but in truth I realize that I am not so clear-headed in times of great stress (especially when blood is involved!) Praise the Lord that you were able to impress upon your children what true faith looks like!