Tuesday, February 3, 2009


Thursday was a little warmer than usual (it was maybe 20 degrees!) so the kids and I all went out together when the big boys got home from school to play in the front yard.
Jumping is the favorite activity.
Looks like I just took pictures, but it's not true. I fly off the snow mountain too. (Sorry that you have to see that, neighbors.)
We love where we live for so many reasons. This is one of them.
Vive l'hiver!!

Unfortunately, Fortunately

Have you ever read the story Fortunately, Unfortunately? Well, if you have, you'll understand the idea of this post. I'm starting my story with "unfortunately" because this story starts in a bad way. I tried to think of how I could begin it on a good note, but I don't think it's possible. So here we go...

Unfortunately, I did not take my pull-up bar down from the top of the family room door when I finished exercising one morning about 5 months ago. Mark didn't see it in time when he tried to enter the room, hit his head on it, and lurched backwards as a consequence. He spent the next months in pain, especially when he had to stand for any period of time or throughout the night when trying to sleep.

, he never blamed me for my thoughtlessness. He never made me feel bad for it. I felt plenty bad, anyway.

Unfortunately, the doc that saw him a couple days after this mishap, didn't really do a thorough exam. She said maybe he had strained a ligament. Maybe she was right, but I doubt it. Mark continued to work out, swimming and even running. We had a triathlon to do in May, afterall.

Fortunately, Mark is not a complainer. I know that he suffered a lot, but he was trooper.

Unfortunately, Saturday morning while Mark was preparing to go teach a class to a group from our church, he just leaned over to pick up the projector and felt something "go". He went ahead to the class, taught it (mostly standing), but he when tried to leave when it was finish he could barely breath from the intense pain. He couldn't walk.

Fortunately, one of the members of the class is a doctor. He is an immigrant and can't practice here yet, but he knew that Mark needed medical attention. He and another guy pretty much carried Mark out to the car, and our teammate drove him directly to the hospital. Mark told me later that he was SO glad to be at the hospital and in the care of professionals.

Unfortunately, the drugs that were administered to Mark seemed to have no affect on him. He was absolutely miserable. He spent 12 hours there waiting and waiting to get some relief. The ER was bursting at the seams and it took a long time for the doctor's analysis after the x-ray that he had taken.

Fortunately, we have a wonderful neighbor (merci, Claudia) who was willing to watch the kids so that I could go to the hospital to be with Mark. And our teammate (thanks, Tim) stayed with him until I could get there. I stayed with Mark until about 10:00 and then I figured he'd stay the night there as he couldn't still walk. They had wheeled him out into the hall by that point to free up a "room". There was no place for me to be with him so I went on home to be with the kids.

Unfortunately, at midnight Mark called to tell me they were releasing him. I couldn't believe it. How was I to get him home? At midnight. Why was he not staying there until they had answers?

Fortunately, our doctor friend had told us to call for any reason in the night if we needed help (merci, Nazaire). So that is who I called. He brought Mark home and got him up the stairs and in the house.

Unfortunately, he has been in incredible pain since he got home. He is really stuck in the bedroom just trying to get comfortable. This means that I'm on call to basically do everything for him. And it appears that whenever I run up the stairs to answer a request from Mark, one of the kids will need me in that moment. I'm a little tired--answering the phone, making calls about appointments and medication, holding the family together, being mom and dad.

Fortunately, I'm burning lots of calories running the many stairs we have in this house to be taking care of everone. And we have been so grateful for the many emails and phone calls we have received from our friends and family letting us know we are thought of and prayed for. We're so blessed to have friends in the medical field who have made house calls (merci, Dr. Marc) and pulled some strings (merci, Blandine) to get us a couple more muscle relaxers to last Mark until his doc's appointment today.

Today he saw his doctor who tortured him to find out what the problem is. I had to go out into the other part of the office so as to not faint. Listening to that and watching Mark in so much pain was more than I could handle. The next thing is an MRI. I need to make the appointment tommorrow. I hope we can get this done very quickly.

And that's where this story ends. If you've even stayed with me this far, you must be somewhat interested. Please pray with us for Mark's quick recovery and for us to learn and grow through this experience.