Monday, February 22, 2010
Surviving through the night
5:04 p.m. Today's project was to spend a nice day with Steve after a hectic week. We had wonderful fellowship and good company (Pastor Paul and our son Sean, on Tuesday and Wednesday; Disneyland on Thursday; the brother from Therma-Cool, doing A/C repair, and Henry Ortega our computer tech on Friday; Paul and Pavel on Sunday midday; then Home Fellowship Sunday evening!) Add the emergency back problem that overcame Heidi yesterday, and this was a day to go back to bed until 7:45, after I checked on her at 7. Praise the Lord she was able to go to work today!
At lunchtime we had run out of lettuce for Steve's sandwich and my salad, since every bit of the last-picked batch of our garden's bounty was gobbled up at Home Fellowship last night. Once I had my variegated handful of leaves, I remembered the oddball plant that had sprung up out of an avocado seed buried within the compost we had spread onto the expansion rows on the far end of the garden. The find was unbelieveable, because a non-avocado was sprouting OUT of THE SEED, apparently taking nutrients from its rich contents!!
After three decades of growing avocado plants for household adornment (one of my many hobbies) I am very aware of the appearance of their leaves at every stage. As you can see from the photo, this looks more like a mint plant, or spinach. With that in mind, I tore off a piece of a leaf and smelled it--more like green beans, but inconclusive. Now, at an advanced stage, I saw the tubers that are definitely common to avocados as they root in soil. Maybe there will be a mystery plant and an avocado tree in our garden! (Although that's the new Roma tomato section!) I plan to have "botanist" Pavel take a look at it soon--just hearing about it a few weeks ago got his attention. This mystery plant is a real survivor!
The main project for the afternoon was to take Steve to his neurologist to get the results of the home sleep study he undertook last Monday night. The doctor took my breath away! Dr. Rai said, "You do have sleep apnea, and I'm surprised that it is not as mild as I had predicted. It seems that you stopped breathing 23 times--once every 3 minutes." "What?!" I cried out. "So what I thought I observed groggily during the night was actually happening, and then I'd elbow Steve to get him to start up breathing again." And now I feel guilty about the times I'd not really been awake, and would fall back asleep when the snoring stopped! Steve is alive today, all because we have a God Who "neither slumbers nor sleeps!" (Psalm 121:4)
The next step is for Steve to spend the night at the neurologist's sleep lab, from 9 p.m. to 5 a.m. next Tuesday night. The reason is to discern the exact level of air pressure he'll need for his new "bi-pap" machine. I expressed concern about the noise, but Dr. Rai said the new machines are definitely quieter than the snoring, a soft, rhythmic sound of air flowing in and out of the lungs. On the other hand, what choice do we have? Seems like a matter of survival for my husband...I'll get used to any noise that arises from a lifesaving machine!!
God has created a powerful drive for survival, the way that we humans work for our daily needs, including the way we wives are "helpmeets" (KJV) for our husbands. Genesis 2:18-25 commands me to fulfill that role for Steve with love, energy, compassion and identification with every one of his joys, needs and ambitions. "In sickness and in health," we both vowed, and Steve has seen me through cancer and menopause, too, with nary a complaint! Getting used to a new sleep routine seems a pretty minor sacrifice...
Humorously, I have to ponder that other survivor, the mystery plant in our garden, refusing to just wither and die, getting sustenance from the nearest available source! Much is quietly going on in God's creation while we sleep. Last night at Home Fellowship we studied this passage, Mark 4:26-27, where Jesus said, "The kingdom of God is as if a man should scatter seed on the ground, and should sleep by night and rise by day, and the seed should sprout and grow, he himself does not know how." Amen to that, from someone who loves to grow plants of all kinds!
I have no idea what the Holy Spirit is doing in the background of His children's lives; I'm just grateful that He does it!!