Tuesday, November 26, 2013

after surgery

We were so grateful to learn that Evan's spinal cord was not severed. 
It was badly bruised, though.  The surgeon answered our questions one
by one.  Yes, he has seen people walk again after an injury like this. 
And he has seen those who don't walk after an injury like this. 

It depends on time and therapy.

And God.

The week at Duluth was amazing.  It was awesome to see how God works
in our lives - how He helps us in the middle of trauma.  We were extremely
grateful for the care given to all of us at the hospital.

-- all the thoughts and prayers, visits, flowers, etc. given by family and friends.

-- the network of family and friends on Facebook and caring bridge . . .

My favorite quote by one of Evan's co-workers --
"I'm praying for you and I don't even pray."

We felt buoyed up
        above all the trouble
                   by those prayers.

Now -- a year later we are still waiting.
We still need those prayers.

- - - - - - - - - - -
Evan and Chelsea transferred to Rochester MN in time for Thanksgiving.
A Thanksgiving Holiday in the middle of trouble . . .

That reminds me of Corrie ten Boom and her sister, Betsy. 
They were in prison for helping Jews during World War II.
In their sleeping quarters they found bunks
 - triple high -
with straw mattresses
thin blankets
and fleas. 

Corrie and Betsy decided to follow the verse in I Thessalonians 5:18.
In every thing give thanks:
for this is the will of God
in Christ Jesus concerning you.

Betsy started the list.
   - the Bible they held in their hands
   - they were together. 
   - the crowds of women who would hear the Bible being read.
   - the fleas

But when Betsy started thanking God for the fleas Corrie thought,
"This is a mistake.  There is no way I can be thankful for fleas."

Corrie eventually found out they had complete freedom
     to hold prayer meetings
              and times of Bible reading
                    because of the fleas.
The officers wouldn't step inside the bunk room
      since the place was crawling with fleas.

This has always been one of my favorite stories.
It is one thing to read a favorite story.
Quite another to experience hard times in my life --
 or watch a loved one go through extreme difficulties.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013


(It is so much fun to write this date
which now turns out to be yesterday
since I didn't get this posted
when I wanted to.)
They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength;
       they shall mount up with wings as eagles;
               they shall run, and not be weary;
                  they shall walk, and not faint.
                                  Isaiah 40:31
How many times has this song been sung?
Countless times!
It ends as a prayer . . . 
  Teach me, Lord,
  Teach me, Lord,
       to wait.
 One day I was typing my e-mail address which has the word blue in it.  
My fingers missed the letters and typed blur instead.
That reminds me of my days.  They pass in a blur.
Not that evening . . .  time seemed to have stopped as we watched
the helicopter fly into the night. We finished up the paper work at the
hospital and gathered up Evan's boots.  Drove back to Nashwauk
and on to the cabin where we tumbled our stuff into suitcases,
hauled them to the car then stopped in at Jerry and Trenda's place to
pick up Krysta.  Jerry was on the phone talking to my aunt and uncle
who live in Duluth.
It seemed to take a long time to decide - who would stay? 
who would go with us?   At last Jeremy and Liz, Chelsea and Krysta,
Ellis and I were on the way.  Since we had to drive a couple hours and it
had taken so long to get started I think we all expected to be able to talk
to the doctor right away and see Evan right away and find out what
what was going on right away.
It was not like that at all.  Hospitals have a different time zone. 
My aunt and uncle were there to welcome us.  A chaplain came to the
waiting room and sat with us.  She prayed with us.  She rounded up blankets
and pillows for us and showed us how
the couches could be lengthened into beds. 
And still we waited and waited and waited.  At last we could see Evan
and talk to him.  They were starting to give him pain meds but he was
still in a lot of pain.  He had been through all sorts of tests. 
They were going to do surgery first thing in the morning.
I have to say this hospital was amazing.  Every morning a psalm was read
over the intercom.  Everyone was kind and helped in the most awesome ways.
My aunt and uncle were amazing.  They opened their home to us. 
We took turns, some of us staying with Evan and Chelsea and some of us
going to Dave and Leah's place.
A person never knows when a time of waiting will come --
just like this evening.  I was waiting for Ellis to get done with the brake job
he was doing on the van.  Now he is waiting for me
to get done with this post.
On that day of surgery we found out --
There is only so much coffee a person can drink when you are waiting.
Only so much you can stand to read . . .   only so many places to walk.
Sleep -- you can try to sleep the hours away. 
         Text your family and friends. 
But everyone else is having an ordinary work day. 
They are busy while our day is standing still. 
We found out we could draw strength from our Lord
      as we waited on Him.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013


November 11, 2013

One year ago today our son fell out of a tree stand
when he was hunting in the north woods.

This year (11-11-13) we woke up to snow and icy roads. 
After driving Krysta to school Ellis and I arrived at Hog Slat. 
The store truck had snow piled on it so Ellis started it to warm up
and melt off.  Next we had to deal with a tire on the car that was leaking air. 
After that Ellis discovered  the windshield had cracked in the store truck. 

Cold snow, glass and warm air meet.
We found out not one but two tires are worn out and need to be replaced. 
Such a disgruntled feeling went through me - 
I was crying in this broken world
where tires go flat
and glass and backs
and hearts break.

I remembered that evening a year ago.
There is a check list of things / events we are thankful for.
I went down the list again.  When Evan fell his phone
stayed in his pocket instead of flying off and gone somewhere.
He didn't lose consciousness; he could start txting for help right away.
We had poor reception but the call for help came thro.

Ellis, Chelsea and I had no car, so we ran out to the road and
started calling people who did.  Jeremy and Liz called the ambulance.
We  called Jerry and Trenda.  Jerry drove to the cabin to give us a ride.
John and Ladina headed out to the woods to unlock the gate.  We got
to the road and turned in only to find the ambulance  ready to
turn around because they thought they were on the wrong road. 

No no!  we will show you the way - follow us.  So we drove down
a bumpy road in the dark with those ambulance lights flashing all around. 
We pointed the way at a bend of the road where the police directed everyone
to park except the emergency vehicles.  Ellis and Chelsea flew out of the car
and ran.  I got untangled from the seat belt  and started after them,
clutching my cell phone.  I thought of Deanne
as I was running and praying.

Sometimes this is the way life is.
Crying out to God. 
Calling family and friends.
Running and stumbling over deep ruts in the road . . .
Dodging broken branches.  
The only light very faint coming from the stars shining overhead.
All the time thinking, "This is just a bad dream.
Soon I'll wake up and everything will be okay."

But I rounded the corner and saw it wasn't a dream. 
An ambulance sat in that clearing.  Strong men were lifting Evan.
The stretcher slid safely into the back of the ambulance.
Chelsea was sitting in the front with the driver.
We followed and drove to Hibbing.
There we found Evan still awake and making everyone laugh.
There was a mistake on the paper work and someone asked him
if he was 31.  He was very emphatic,  "No, I'm not 31.  I'm 25."

We arrived just in time to find out Evan would be airlifted to
Duluth.  Went outside and watched as they "used a shoe horn"
to fit him in the helicopter 'cause he is soo tall.  Clung to each
other as they lifted off and prayed together  huddled in that tight
group with the cold wind whipping around us. 

Today I thought of this verse from Psalms 51. 
The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit:
    a broken and a contrite heart,
                      O God,
            Thou wilt not despise.

Friday, November 8, 2013


Sorry pals . . .

I have been knitting.

Dish cloths and slippers. 

Started a scarf 

but even though

I was careful as could be

 a mistake stares at me. 

Now the dilemma. 

Should I rip it out

and start over

or ignore it

and go on? 

Don't worry. 

I will be back.