Thursday, November 18, 2010

So Everything Was Going Great Until....

As a young woman of 19 I had to settle within my heart that, if I married Tom, some year in the future we'd have to deal with something hard concerning his polio. A whisper from God, I think that was.

Thirty-two years later--yesterday--that day arrived. And even after smaller polio problems along our path, still, it was and is a shock. Another one from which to recover, another one so soon following Tom's being laid-off.

Yesterday Tom saw a specialist who--sad story very, very shortly stated--said, if he doesn't have a major surgery to replace the titanium disc in his neck with a whole other thing, well, Tom will eventually lose the use of his left arm.

Gah. He's been losing the feeling in all those fingers, feeling a tingling pain and there are more details about how the titanium disc is slipping and should have been replaced by a 'cage' 8 years ago, instead, but I'll spare you.

Oh, and Tom is left-handed, too. And our medical insurance premiums, if we don't get a different kind, will multiply by five in the middle of December (another long story there). And what kind of a job can Tom get if he has to tell them, "Oh,by the way, I'll need to take 4 to 6 months off to recover from surgery." ?

Though actually, Tom was leaning more toward finishing his business courses (online) to get a bachelor's degree, first. He's more than halfway there, but what about the timing of all this? Could he continue the courses while recuperating from surgery? (And yes, he'll be getting a second opinion.)

Or should we just go ahead with his seeking to go out on disability, which has been an option, too? A more viable option than ever after yesterday's news. Doctors and physical therapists told Tom for years they'd do all they could to help with that, for he deserves it.

Gah. We'll need a disability advocate and a few other professionals to walk us through this field of land mines. But even there, we'll still need most to hear from God--darn closely, dare I say? For really, this does all feel like, "One wrong move and you'll wreck the course of the whole rest of your lives." Always there's that money-enough-for-the-future factor. You know, that annoying thing. That, and the trusting-God-for-money factor, also.

Maybe I should get a job, something more in the self-employment field though, for who would give me whole days off to sit in hospitals waiting for Tom during appointments or surgeries or who would care for him at recovery times? Or I guess I should start writing essays and devotions for checks in the mail. Maybe it's time for all that, though (I hate to say this) writing for money makes me sigh. I just don't wanna. (But we can't always do what we want, I realize that.) Even babysitting sounds better to me than writing for income. (I know, I know, I know... no lectures please.)

I knew there was too much Grace floating around our house lately. Just knew it.

But of course, I'm grateful she's still here in the midst of what feels like a field of land mines. We need her, we need God and His ultimate wisdom more than ever. And we also need your prayers. We so don't want to mess this all up, not only for ourselves, but for you who watch us through this blog. More than ever, we want to face this with godly courage, not fearful whining.

We'll get through this, of course. But it does get tiring waiting for the shock to wear off so we can smile again and think and listen more clearly.


Forgive me, please, if you start seeing holes in this blog. If I disappear now and again. For if I must start writing essays, etc. for money (sigh) I'll need some time off even though I'd much, much rather be here with you.


Kim said...

The old "when it rains, it pours".
Oh, how I HATE that!
You are such a good listener you will hear the right answer(s) when God whispers them. And of course, Grace is there, living with you. :)

Brenda@CoffeeTeaBooks said...

We have been there, when one thing tumbled on another. Then you look back and see God in it (not that it makes it easier to go through).

My husband was able to get on disability without an advocate. I would suggest going through the process to qualify and then obtain an advocate only if he gets turned down the first time.

Many people have to go to a second application but we found by having doctors willing to back up the necessity, it went very well the first time.

Anonymous said...

Brenda is correct. You can probably do the necessary disability application yourselves. However, it is more common than not, to be turned down the first time. Just persevere, and you will succeed. I worked in Senior and Disabled Services, so I am familiar with the process.
It is also possible that Tom could get financial assistance in getting his degree, on line, while on disability. Then, maybe he could get a job that he loves.
Everything happens for a reason. This could be a window (of opportunity) that opens after having had a door closed.

Dolores said...

Debra, so sorry to hear you are having more problems. I just said a little prayer for you and Tom.

Kristi in the Western Reserve said...

Dear Debra, I am so sorry to hear this. But I believe Grace will lead you through it. Do get a second opinion as soon as possible so you have the option of surgery by the deadline. I think you will want it anyway. You know after two years on disability Tom would be eligible for medicare. Oh, I am so sorry you got hit with this too. But it sounds as though some of your readers have experience and good advice here that will help you. And in the meantime, I am sure everyone is praying for you. I am. And you have Grace. You really do. Hugs from Ohio! And maudvibes.

Odie Langley said...

Sorry to hear about the negative news. Just stay focused on God and He will see you through anything. Of course we will be interceeding for you and Tom and will be here when you need us.

Donetta said...

prayers,you have them.
"It ain't no sin to get the blues.
Jesus never said that pain would never get a hold of you, He said he would never leave you all alone. Some people act as if it were possible that they would rewrite the epistles of the gospel so that nobody would ever shed a tear.

It aint no sin to get the blues.

Loving you

Lori Alexander said...

I had that surgery on my neck a year and a half ago. It took me a long time to fact I didn't think I would heal until I found He said to ice 15 minutes on and 15 minutes off all the time. It takes away the inflammation and when I wasn't icing to do neck wiggles...keep the head moving. That also breaks up the inflammation and scar tissues. With a little bit of physical therapy to strengthen my neck, I am SOOOO much better. Have your husband check out that website and look for info on whiplash. You can find it for free, just keep looking. So now whenever I pull a muscle, break an arm, etc. I do what he suggests...lots of icing and messaging and it works!

Anonymous said...

Hi Debra, prayers for Tom and you, too. I'm so sorry this has happened. The ladies have given you great advice-you have the best readers. Hugs, Joyce

Anonymous said...

I've just returned from a week away to read this news.

So sorry to hear about the difficult road ahead.

I'll certainly pray for you both.