Lost? Here You Go. You Can Thank Me Later.

Friday, February 19, 2016

Stop Screaming and Listen!

"I don't believe it."
"That is why you fail."
Please Note: 
This first treasure (unexpected blessings during difficult experiences) is going to be both spiritual, and religious, in nature. 

If that concerns you, read it anyway. You might like it.

Please Note, Part Two:
That being said, what I'm about to share is true.




Treasure #1: The Power of Spirit aka Divine Inspiration

Like mother, like daughter.
My wife saved our daughter's life.

She would probably refute that statement, but with some hindsight you begin to notice interesting patterns. When you notice that timing was everything, especially when there was no reason to do what you did with what you had at the time, I begin to look for clues.

Seriously, I wonder. How did we avoid that particular bullet?

Things go bad, yet they can be a good deal worse. That being said, one of the treasures we sometimes take for granted are people sensitive enough to hear divine inspiration and act upon it.

My wife is one of those people, and she does it more often than she cares to admit.

For some readers, the notion of divine inspiration may seem a convenient way to describe ordinary intuition. Yet I firmly believe there are times when we are guided by subtle but powerful inspiration from our Creator.

I won't delve into the details here, but I will be frank. I personally have received information that A) I did not possess at the time that B) came into my mind as clearly as a voice that C) proved to be exactly what was needed at a crucial time.

Again, timing can be everything.


***

Last month, it worked like this.

My wife Sharla saw Miriam's signs and, at first glance, they did not seem much of a problem. She had the tools to manage it, but despite a good night's sleep Miriam needed two liters of air to keep her saturation at the right level. Other than her racing heartbeat, there was no coughing or gasping or other distress. Pretty typical.

Yet Sharla felt she needed to go to the ER, so she did. She also felt impressed to bring an overnight bag, though I'll admit that in our life that's just good practice.

For the rest of the story, if you're short on time, here's a 1:45 recap of what happened (just in the lungs instead of the brain).


Still reading? Okay.

At the ER, an x-ray revealed pneumonia. Now Miriam needed four liters of air to keep her sats up. The doctor there decided she needed transport to Children's Hospital to be safe, though the ambulance did not flash its lights. Better safe than sorry, they said. By the time they arrived, Miriam was on six liters of oxygen.

When they reached the bed at the Children's Hospital ER, Miriam's saturation had dropped to 50% and she was on ten liters of oxygen. Progressive x-rays revealed bacterial infection blooming in one lung and, within a short time, spreading to the other lung.

Here's the thing. It's never just one thing with my daughter. There's always something more.









Note: This is an analogy.
Long story short, Miriam crashed while in the Children's Hospital ER. The pneumonia had cascaded into ARDS, or Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome. You can learn more about that here.

Scary stuff.

Taking her upstairs to the ICU, they placed a central line near her collarbone - which punctured her lung and caused it to partially collapse. Joy. They added a shunt in her ribs to drain liquid and gases surrounding her lungs.

I eventually arrived from work and had some time alone with Miriam and my wife. My daughter was in bad shape. How did things go downhill so quickly? For the first time in a while I was visibly shaken at the unexpected turn of events.

A friend and I provided Miriam with a priesthood blessing. Again, for those not of my faith, it may seem a quaint ritual, yet I have seen miracles exercising this power. For those unfamiliar, here is a great primer on priesthood blessings.

Inspiration is another name for personal revelation. This means you get information unavailable to you at the time (such as what the future might bring), but in a way that provides complete confidence. I remember the distinct feeling that came moments after the blessing finished, something I've felt many times in my life.

She will be fine.

I haven't always felt this after a blessing, but when I do it has been right. Always.

Fair enough, I thought, as if God was standing there. Thanks for the update.

***

With inspiration, with the Holy Spirit, there is no fear. The doubt is gone, I feel confident in my choices. I actually feel something I normally never feel: peace. I cling to this feeling when things look the more hopeless.

I felt this inspiration the night Miriam was born, struggling to live.

I felt this inspiration the night Miriam had the flu a few years ago. I had a distinct impression after the blessing that her visit to the hospital would be longer than expected. She turned out to have rotavirus and stayed ten more days.

I felt this inspiration during a grand mal seizure, when I placed my hand on her head and offered a blessing and watched the seizure stop within seconds. Without medication, mind you.

***

Inspiration often comes as shared intelligence. I expressed to my wife I felt Miriam needed to be intubated. That's a rough thing to do to anyone, but it felt right.

She looked at me and said, "You know, I've felt the same thing."

We told the attending nurse a few minutes later, who looked a little surprised and said, "I came to see what you thought about that option."

Of course you did, because we knew before you arrived. We'd been inspired and prepared in advance. She's never been intubated aside from surgery before. No one had suggested it. She was stable, but struggling. For both Mom and Dad to have this same thought, mere minutes before the doctors come to the same conclusion in another room?

Coincidence? Maybe. Mutual decision-making based on experience? Perhaps.

Nah. It felt different, for one clear reason:

My fear was gone.


***

Please Note, Part Three: 
Another analogy.





***

Please Note, Part Four: 
What the dragon really looked like at the time.






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