Monday, May 17, 2010

New directions

Sunday, May 16, 2010

I went to church today. There were many firsts involved: The first time in public in a wheelchair, first car trip, first time I went to someone instead of them coming to me.

Whenever we move to a new city, we always go church shopping. We found a great church in Oxford's Faith Lutheran. The atmosphere is warm and welcoming, the music is lots of fun and the Sermons are always thought provoking. Logan, the church's pastor, is a wonderful man. He came to visit me several times at home and in the hospital since I got sick. It felt good to celebrate this next phase of my recovery at his church.

I got home Thursday afternoon and felt like an alien in my own home. It wasn't the changes in the house; new, wide doors and lower cabinets to help with accessibility. It was the change in me. I am not the person I was when I left the house 32 days ago.

People have been asking, "How does it feel to be home? " Usually I tell them that it's good to be home, I am glad to be here. Those things are true. What is also true is that being home is a frustrating: My wheelchair is a little too large for our narrow hallway. Getting in and out of the bedroom and bathroom is tricky. It is also difficult to learn how to use the new equipment I brought home with me. I'm still shocked by how weak I am. And I am totally dependent on Adrienne and Alex to help me with everything.

On Friday night I had a meltdown. After two days of helping me do my transitions from wheelchair to bed or commode, Adrienne was in a lot of pain. Her back was sore from all the extra work. She needed to go to bed and rest. At around 7:30, I started to panic. I felt like I was trapped in the bed. The harder I struggled to control my feelings, the more intense they became. When Adrienne asked me was wrong, I burst into tears.

I didn't want to be weak. I didn't want to depend on her to get me out of bed. I didn't want to hurt her. I begged God to show me what I needed to do to change my life. Was it my pride that put me in this wheelchair? Had I failed some test? Was I guilty of not working hard enough? I cried harder and harder, searching for something that I could undo that would bring me out of this bed and on to my feet again. Just like I used to be.

Realizing that I needed more help than she could provide, Adrienne suggested calling Pastor Logan and asking him to come over. Knowing that I could not think my way out of this cave I had gotten lost in, I agreed. It was as if I looked up and saw a tiny point of light; this was a well not a cave. There was help and help was lowering a ladder to rescue me.

Logan heard my fears. He was compassionate and supportive. He reminded me that Jesus was everywhere. That means that Jesus is with me.

So, how do I like being home? There's no place I would rather be. I still have my friends and family and my faith to take me through today. And today was a good day: I went to church, I rode in a car, I ate three meals a table, I sat my wheelchair for 6 hours, talked with family, visited with friends, and depended on Alex and Adrienne to help me with what I couldn't do myself.

I'm also glad to see my pets again. Eloise, Frannie, and Olivia were overjoyed to have me back in the house again. Even Thor showed some excitement.

1 comment:

  1. Michael,
    I'm so sorry to hear about the many challenges you have been facing. You are a very talented writer - I'll be praying that soon you will be writing about the progress you are making and how things are getting easier for you. My thoughts and prayers are with you, Adrienne and your family.
    Sharon (Greg's Mom)