We Are Family

The fever spikes, hot tears spilling from her pain wracked body drenching the pillow beneath.

“She’s not going to make the drive” he whispers to me.

Instinctively I know this too, but I push forward with plan A because there is no plan B in the works for a sick kid and a mom left alone at home without a vehicle and a husband away for work.

Somewhere between packing the van to drop him off and five minutes left before departure I surrender.  “Take the van and go honey. We’ll figure this out somehow” I mumble breathing a prayer.

Sometimes all one can do is believe these wordless sighs become prayers. That HE takes our groans and turns them into beautiful petitions carried straight to the throne room.

I pick up the phone frantic and I know just who to call.  There are those friends like family who risk anything, and all it takes is courage to ask. She assures me there is nothing we can’t figure out together.  That there’s a car free to use for the doc this morning and kids and groceries and visits to the pharmacy will all work out one way or the other.

We make it to the doc and stumble through blood draws, throat swabs, urine samples and there I am thankful for all the years of health struggles because I know what it is like and I whisper words of encouragement to this girl right growing up before my eyes through needles and pokes and prods.

The strep we thought it was comes back negative and everything suddenly becomes complicated with a follow up appointment and more tests as we wait and see what 48 hours will bring and this momma is right weary on a Monday morning before noon.

The rest of the week is a blur with fevers, pain and words like “appendicitis”, “CT scans”, and “make sure she drinks that smoothie two hours before you arrive at the hospital so the contrast will work”.

In the middle of all this THEY showed up.  The family of God tangibly present with meals, cars, kid sitting, hugs in the middle of emotional melt downs in front yards, texts, prayers…

It’s easy to say you’re part of a family, but until it functions like one, you can’t know for sure. Until you’ve bared your soul and they’ve opened hands and hearts you’ll never know. How can one begin to trust unless family bonds have been tested and found true?

The tech comes in at the hospital waiting room to tell this hungry and tired mom and daughter that all is well.  We hug and celebrate over Macdonalds singing long and loud to the radio all the way home.

Then there’s this guy who calls to say “keep the car an extra day…and take the kids berry picking just because…”.

I hang up smiling.

It’s then I know. We ARE family. A family that’s bigger than blood lines and geographic locations and maiden names and homes of origin.

It takes a family and we belong.  This heart beats all joy.

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