Saturday, April 16, 2011

Part 3: Mothers

Needless to say, after hearing that kind of news from a doctor about his wife, Josh was completely beside himself. He was exhausted, anxious, and worried, and needed support himself. He called his Dad and asked him if he could please come, and then called my Dad to update him on my condition and asked that my mom come as well. I am so thankful to both of them for quickly making arrangements and coming. Stewart, my father-in-law, booked his ticket in the middle of the night and didn't realize his reservation was for the following night. He arrived at the airport in the morning, but the airline amazingly bumped his flight up so that he could get here quicker. Josh really needed him, so that was a great blessing.

When I was intubated, they put me under, and while I was asleep I had a dream. It wasn't an out-of-body experience. I was lying comfortably on the exact same hospital bed, with the same machines in the same room. I was granted permission to have visitors. Any visitors that I desired. This made me so happy, and in the next instant, both sets of my Grandparents (who have all passed away) appeared. They were all elderly and in regular clothes (just as I remembered them), but were smiling and surrounding my bed and in perfect health. Although Grandpa and Pop were present, their roles were more supportive, as they stood behind their wives with a hand on her shoulder or casually in their pocket, seemingly content to just wait patiently for their wives to finish their visit.


*all of these photos are from our wedding - 2003*

My paternal Grandma was first, and she placed her hand on my cheek and patted my face (as she always did) and said, "Oh, Amy my darlin'. " (as she always did )

Then my maternal Grandmother held my hand and as I turned to look at her, the tip of her tongue was curled and sticking out, as it always did when she was concentrating on something like baking biscuits in the kitchen or washing dishes. It's an endearing trait that I always remembered, and was so familiar to me. There were no profound words exchanged or insights shared. We just sat there like that for a while. A hand on my face, and a hand in my hand. I felt empowered, comforted and lifted by these women - by these faithful, vigilant mothers. I knew I needed to get better so I could be a mother to my own children. My children needed me. I needed to stay.

The following is a family newsletter entry from my mom about her experience:

On Saturday I was reminded of one of the greatest blessings of my life. It was Jon’s birthday. The beginning of what has been the most fulfilling journey I could imagine, that of being a mother. That particular morning we received a call from Josh explaining how seriously ill Amy was, and could we please come. I immediately asked the Lord for his help and comfort as I have done countless other times when I felt my children were in danger. A very calming spirit came over me. I could not say I was assured she would be fine, but I definitely felt peaceful. The morning was dark and foggy much like the feelings of that day. I left Logan for Janet’s home to meet Tim who would accompany me. As I drove up the canyon my impression was to “Be believing, fear not.” And then as I rounded the bend the clouds lifted, the sun poured down on me and the radiant blue sky made my heart fill with peace and joy, I knew our prayers were heard. And so began the second joy of this experience. I began watching my children all of whom are the absolute joy of my life begin reaching out to help one another. Tim graciously accompanied me, leaving his work and other responsibilities to drive, babysit (Boo) and (Yaks), comfort Amy, and endless other acts of charity. Andrew and Peter came to stay with Dad. Catherine became our contact person, Emily and Marie were constantly texting each other. Jon and James offered their faith and prayers from so far away. From one end of the country to the other; children, aunts, and cousins, even across the ocean, flooded lines to the temple, offering prayers of faith for Amy. It was an experience I will always remember. Like so many others our family has been through, the experiences which refine are not easy but are there for us to learn and be tested. I love you all so much.

One of my favorite movies is Little Women, and there is a scene when one of the daughters contracts Scarlet Fever. The mother, Marmee, is away, but returns home to find her daughter very ill. I love the look of relief on the daughter's face when the mother enters the room and says, "Cricket. Marmee's here." My mother has no medical background or powers to heal, but when I saw her walk into the room, hurry to my bedside, grab my hand and kiss my forehead, I heaved a deep intubated sigh of relief. Mommy was here. Everything was going to be fine.



And how I can I write a post about mothers without including my mother-in-law? Annette literally dropped everything, got in her car and picked us up where we had fallen. She took care of the kids so Josh could go to work or come visit me. She fielded phonecalls and visitors, took care of mealtimes, bedtimes, dishes, housework, laundry, etc. She brought only a small bag of belongings, thinking she would only be here a few days, which turned into several weeks! She never complained or lost her patience. She was our angel mother, and we'll be forever grateful to her for her sacrifice for us.



"The errand of angels is given to women, and this is the gift that as sisters, we claim:
to do whatsoever is gentle and human, to cheer and to bless in humanity's name."

Hymn # 309 As Sisters in Zion

15 comments:

Shelese said...

Amy, I love you.

Taylor's said...

I bawled through the entire thing . . . what an amazing family!

The same family I remember from the Sterling Park Ward so many years ago!

What great in-laws you have and what a blessing it is to have a great relationship with them!

The Lord truly love you and your family; you can tell in every one of those pictures; it beams in their eyes!

Cath said...

Wow what an amazing experience... I hadn't heard that about the dream. Thanks for sharing it with us and for the reminder that our grandparents are never far away

Sarah said...

Oh, Amy! :)

Dianna said...

Wow, I don't know how, but you have been able to capture the sacredness of your horrific experience. I feel so proud to be a woman, wife, mother, grandmother after reading this. There is a lot to live up to though. Thanks for writing and sharing, Amy.

Liz said...

Amy, thanks for sharing the story. I sit here wiping my eyes as I finish reading it. I am so happy you are doing better!

Carrie said...

Amy - Sarah kept me updated during your ordeal. I'm sitting here with wet eyes after reading your sacred experience. THank you for sharing. I'm so grateful that you are home and recovering. You will still be in my prayers.

love.boxes said...

Amy, I'm so grateful that you have been sharing this story. It's so inspiring. I read every post on google reader, but wanted to stop by just to say how thankful I am that you are well. *hearts* Tiffany

Cara and Steve said...

Amy, I have tears streaming down my face as I type this. My mom told me yesterday that you had posted, and I finally had some quiet time to sit down and read. You are an inspiration to me and I am truly amazed by your courage as you have battled this illness. I'm am so grateful that the Lord has blessed both you and your family as you continue to recover from this. It has strengthened my testimony of the power of the prayer and the reality of the priesthood. I was touched by the entry that your mother wrote... we are truly blessed to have such wonderful mothers! Thank you for sharing your story. Love you :)

Marie' said...

I know now why you said you are a new person. This account is just beautiful. Thank you for sharing it.

steph said...

Beautiful. You have a precious family. I am so grateful for your words.

Nicole said...

I echo the Taylor's comment...Bawling!!! You made it Amy... and are destined for great things, such as being the mom to those darling kiddos. love you!

Chad said...

Thanks for your open candidness in all of these posts. I deal with issues like yours regularly, but never on a personal level. It's crazy to hear about the experiences in detail. Glad it all worked out. Makes me want to hug my kids a little longer tonight.

Sunny said...

Speechless. Thank you for sharing & may God continue to watch over and bless you and your family.

kthom said...

You have such a way with words. Beautifully written...you're loved!