Monday, October 22, 2012

Georgie and Lessons Learned

Today was quite a day. Well, let's start from the beginning and I'll tell you what I mean...

I woke up after a TON of really terrible nightmares just really not wanting to have another day. I honestly can't remember anything much except for an epic ice cream feast, but I was never satisfied with it. Pretty sure I know what that part means... I miss ice cream. I avoided the mint chocolate chip though, which meant its wasn't from my favorite place in Tenerife;) I remember something about being chased and something about being responsible for a small child, but that's most of my dreams. Something last night really struck a chord with me- it wasn't good. As I sat thinking about it earlier I almost busted into tears. Something wasn't good or right in the dream. I'm a bit intuitive, so dreams can really either make my day or mess it up. Often, dreams are indicative of the way things are going with either me or a loved one. I woke up knowing something wasn't right, but that's not the way I wanted to start my Monday. I was out sick on Friday and I really just wanted to hit the ground running strong this morning, not thrown off. Instead of slumping around, I wound up just saying a little prayer. I honestly don't remember much about it- I was still 1/2 asleep, but I asked God to just be with me today. Not for a great day, not for this or this or this, just that he'd be with me.

I got up to work and normally I'm not too happy when I get there. I roll out of bed, pull myself together and get up there just in time to be 'on time'- sometimes unsuccessfully. Today I was meant to go to our weekly meeting, but my body just wasn't having it- it was telling me I was still exhausted, so I let myself sleep a little longer. I got up JUST in time today. I got up to work and found myself... tired, but happy. I've hit a wall lately where I just don't feel especially helpful. I've been having a hard time finding joy in my work, thus giving others a little bit of attitude. Sorry for anyone at the end of that- it wasn't personal. I've just been a mess. Between being sick and personal struggles, the past month has been a whirlwind. Today would've been no different, but it was...

Things just seemed better... I would say I can't explain it, but I think I can. God was with me. All day long. Things at work honestly...SUCKED... things were a mess from the weekend. I was still frustrated, but not really angry. Just sad that things haven't worked out right and frustrated, but not angry like normal. God helped me address issues to some people with more grace than normal- more patience and willingness to keep an even head. I just... honestly I just felt like God was really making today what it was. There was time during work that I could be a little silly with my co-worker researching potential Christmas presents for a friend, chatting it up with my wonderful day worker Habi and just enjoying reception, but also lots of work got done... it was refreshing. I left knowing I got things done but I enjoyed my day. JOY came to me:)

It didn't stop there. I felt led to do something tonight, that I won't put into detail cuz it's kinda a secret, but a friend was under a lot of pressure today and I felt the need to just go and pray for her for a while. I'm still not sure of the result, but I'm sure he was all over it. I had an idea of how I wanted that to go, but it turned into me praying for them instead of being there supporting them physically... I can't explain it, but I really did feel that's why I was there...took me about 10 minutes to realize it, but once I did, it was really cool:)

Then, I had dinner(yummy fish and chips), got my hair trimmed up real nice(it's getting so long!) and then I was on my way to my room around 7pm. I was thinking 'wow... a whole evening to myself.. what shall I do?' Yes- sometimes I speak in ye olde English to myself;) Before I even put my key in the lock, I knew what I was going to do. I turned around and went straight down to the ward. Now, 7pm isn't TECHNICALLY visiting hours, but I know that by then dinner is over. The main reason we are to come between 7:30-8:30 is because the patent's personal visitors come from 6:30-7:30, and it kinda busts into their time if you come early. But tonight, I popped down to see if it was okay. I went to A ward first where I met up with my sweet boy Yaya who was  cutting something up, a new kiddo who LOVES making paper chains- the ward was COVERED in them- definitely adds a certain flare to the space:), and my sweet baby Mamadou, who is the brother of Aicha who is a patient. I just love this little one. We've grown to love each other- he just lights up each time I come to hang out with him.  This is where things started coming to mind...

I was holding my sweet boy and just messing around playing with him when his mama, sister and some others on the ward just started talking rapid fire and laughing hysterically. The thought crossed my mind, "Are they talking about me?" Then I began to think about it... I have choices... I could storm out in assumption they are and let that be that.... nothing of course being solved as I have 0 clue what they were actually talking about, or I could just keep going on. It made me think of Jesus. He KNEW what people were saying, yet he loved the people SO much that he just kept on going and loving them despite what they said. Really in all honesty, what they were saying probably had NOTHING to do with me, but these thoughts creep in from time to time.

Then I went over to B ward. I saw my sweet George. George was in traction for weeks and weeks, meaning his legs needed to be suspended and pulled by weights for a certain number of hours a day to re-adjust his hips to the right rotation for him to have surgery. Last week I was told he was ready for surgery for Friday. He was in the ICU for a couple days- probably just to control his pain and keep him comfortable more than anything, so I wasn't allowed to see him. Yesterday I went to see him, but he was really upset. He wanted something, but I couldn't figure out what it was for a long time. Once I did, it was time for me to leave. I left hoping someone would get him his book shortly thereafter, but not knowing if he'd get it or fall asleep out of frustration first. Today, I walked in and a nurse said, "Is George your befriend-a-patient" and I said, "No... I just like to visit him from time to time". Then she said, "Well great- we're doing a craft- do you want to help him with his?" Here's where the next lesson began...

Georgie(as I affectionately call him... sometimes Georgie Porgie) was given a balloon to work on(the first smile I've seen of him since Thursday), as I worked on assembling the rest of the 'mobile'- made of popsicle sticks, string and pipe cleaners with balloons attached to the bottom. He tried and tried and tried to get the balloon inflated. He got it semi-inflated after a few extremely strained tries, which made me smile because it was so cute, but I offered help. He stubbornly shook his head 'no!' each time I offered to help and kept trying. I started cheering him on instead of resisting him. He'd get the balloon inflated, then try to find a way to close the opening to keep the air in, but each time he was unsuccessful. Eventually I took the balloon from him and he threw a FIT. I gave him a blue balloon, but he wanted his red one back... he did NOT want the blue... I'd already tied the red and he threw it as far as his little arms would let him and resisted the blue. I walked away for 1 minute to go get another red balloon in hopes it'd calm him, but he was on to the blue. I slipped the red into my pocket, realizing he'd moved on. But the blue was just too hard for him to blow up. After a few struggled tries, he looked up at me with his sweet little eyes and was begging me with them to blow it up. We don't speak the same language after all- our facial expressions are our language:) I kept saying that I couldn't blow up his blue one because he'd slobbered all over it, but I went to get another one. One was too hard for me to blow up(which wasn't part of the lesson- so omit it, but I grabbed a new blue one, he let me blow it up and we completed the mobile. His face lit up. I tried hanging it up and he freaked out and demanded he hold it instead of hang it up.... he was so happy when I surrounded him with the balloons and he was blowing the new red one up too. That's where I left him for the evening.

Now, this is what came to my mind as this was happening... I was thinking how much I'm like Georgie. How much I want to be in control of my own life. How much I want to be the one doing everything and controlling the result. Yeah, things don't always go great, but I try again and again until I get it. But the whole time, I have a loving Father looking at me saying, "Oh Michelle, just let me help you, sweetie! Come on.. okay.... keep trying.. YOU CAN DO IT! COME ON MICHELLE!! Oh.. and it didn't happen again... come on.. let me help..." But, I'm too stubborn. He's been working on this great thing for me that I'm going to LOVE in the end, but all I can focus on is this little bit- the balloon-  that I can't seem to get right. If I would just ask Him for some help, he wouldn't do it FOR me, but he'd show me how to do it- he'd get me through it and in the end he'd give me something I just love.
My Georgie
Photo Cred. to Deb Louden
Every time I mess up, I get frustrated and throw a fit. Every time I lose something that I thought was going to be a part of my life, I lose it- so upset as to why it's not anymore- why something I thought was going to be instrumental is gone. Why relationships I'd formed are suddenly dissolving, why lessons I'd thought I'd learned are re-surfacing, why I feel like I'm still an infant but by the world's standards I should be walking without much help by now.. Things I'd hoped disappear.

The verse 'Hope deferred makes the heart sick' has been on my heart a lot lately... so many hopes I've had over the last few months have just disappeared into nothingness- most of the time without anyone even knowing they existed but me. This is true that it does make the heart sick, but we're not in this alone. Every time I feel overwhelmed and just at odds, I remember I have someone that's there for me even when every single one of my 'people' let me down. I see friends of mine going through serious trials and I think, "wow... how do you even get up in the morning without knowing that someones got your back". And yes- even while watching my TV shows, I notice how empty people's lives are and I think... man...if only you looked deeper and not to each other, but to God who is the only one who will never let you down... Isn't that great? I love it:) It's what makes a terrible day worth seeing through because no matter what has happened, God is still there. Jesus still wraps his arms around me and comforts me. I am too stubborn to accept it sometimes, but he's ALWAYS there... Thank God.

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