Time Can Almost Stand Still - aka, The Longest Day
We were spending all our free time running from our home to our bus, and trying to put in as many hours as possible into getting this tiny home on wheels ready to move into - after all, our move-in date was to be May 1st! And April 26, 2017, was no different than any other in our plans. My father, who was 75 years of age, was coming out to meet us at the acreage every day, and we thoroughly appreciated his assistance!
This day, as I was rushing between two of my favourite men, trying to be useful in any way, even to just consistently picking up the scraps of wood to keep our workspace safe, my mind was slightly distracted by the fact that someone had used our iron-rimmed glass-top patio table as the spot to cut wood with a skill saw,
and had sliced right through said metal and almost to the glass... yep... when I suddenly heard my husband's "too calm" voice calling my name. I am pretty sure everyone knows what kind of voice I mean - the one your mother uses, and you know she means business. Well, when I heard my husband say, "Kimmy, could you come here please?", I knew something not positive was up.
I went to see him, and was informed that he thought something hit him in his eye, and could I see anything... From my viewpoint, once I put my reading glasses on, I could see that something funky was going on with his pupil - it was no longer circular, but torn downward and leaky-looking. So, I suggested that we not worry my father, clean up the site, and inform Dad that we were going to get the eye checked.
That we did - we didn't want to leave any messes...reminds me of the time that one of our daughters split her head open, and I cleaned the blood off the floor and used a burgundy towel (so I wouldn't stain it), before I brought her to emergency... One just never knows how one is going to handle emergencies!
Another issue we had to face, was the fact that we had come in my husband's standard pick-up truck, and I could not drive it. We decided that Fern could drive the truck to our place, and then we would transfer to my SUV - and to add insult to injury, he was out of fuel in the truck, so we had to stop for gasoline!
All these little details are embedded in my mind, especially because as the time was passing, Fern's vision was disappearing! His eye was going black... We called our daughter while on the road, so that she could find the closest and best place for us to go. The first eye doctor we called, told us to go directly to the hospital, but my husband insisted upon going to the closest clinic.
I HAVE to add the fact that one of our dogs was sick, so in order to best use our time, I dropped Fern off at the clinic, and proceeded to the veterinarian. It took me all of twenty minutes to get to the vet's, and when I was in with the doctor (I had informed said doctor that I needed to be quick since my husband needed me), my phone rang, and it was Fern. The doctor at the clinic told him to get to the emergency as fast as he could!
I spoke with the veterinarian again in regards to the fact that I had to go get my husband - but it was as if I was back in a slower time in history, with the vet calmly explaining how he had difficulty with the new filing system blah blah blah...he couldn't find my file... And then, as if in a comedic drama, to add to my soap-opera of a life, my car horn started blaring! This got the vet's attention! My dog was standing on the horn in the car :) And finally, the veterinarian got the point that I was in a rush! In retrospect, obviously God has a great sense of humour!
In the meantime, my husband, realizing that this may be serious, started WALKING towards the hospital! I met him on the road and we went to the hospital together...I am SO GLAD that we live in the area where there are eye specialists, and that we live in a country that has health care!! I had to put that in, because I must recount my blessings!
In the midst of all this, one of our daughters called the Prayer Chain in our Church family. I am sure this was the reason of my husband's and my own peace...neither one of us was overly concerned... I actually left Fern at the hospital and went home for dinner.
Once at the nearest hospital, which just happened to include a renowned eye clinic, within somewhat short of a time period, we were informed that Fern needed emergency surgery. Fern had called me to let me know what the specialist had prognosed, and it wasn't hopeful. I didn't say too much to him, mainly because I didn't want to upset him - he seemed so calm! I called his parents, and forgive me if I do not censor this reaction - we laugh at it now!
As I told Fern's dad that Fern had what basically was "like a bullet fired at close range straight through his eye", and had destroyed every layer, Dad's first response was, "Oh shit!" And then the quiet...We spoke more, but I will never forget that. When I called my parents, my mom just started crying, and that was when their reactions hit me... Was this actually serious?? I got off the phone, and as I was driving back to the hospital, I started to cry myself... Suddenly, I commenced singing, "Why should I feel discouraged? Why should the shadows come?...I sing because I'm happy, I sing because I'm free, for His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me." It didn't sound pretty, but it was straight from my Heavenly Father, and I knew peace again!
As Fern was whisked away to another hospital for the surgery, I met him there. We prayed together... And then, next thing I knew, I was sent to a different waiting area, and one of our daughters was beside me, holding my hand, and then Aaron and Nancy (friends and elder from our Church family), came to sit with us. And Aaron prayed aloud... After a couple of hours, the specialist and surgeon came to inform me that the surgery was a success, in that he had saved the eyeball, but not the eyesight.
On one of the longest days of our lives, one thing held true - God knows, and He is there with us through it all.